devoir

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See also: devoirs

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French deveir (French devoir), from Latin debere ‎(to owe).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /dəˈvwɑː/
  • Hyphenation: de‧voir

Noun[edit]

devoir ‎(plural devoirs)

  1. (archaic) Duty, business; something that one must do.
    • 1603, John Florio, translating Michel de Montaigne, Essays, volume 1, page 149:
      [] he imprint not so much in his schollers mind [] where Marcellus died, as because he was unworthy of his devoire he died there [].
    • 1787, Winifred Marshall Gales, The History of Lady Emma Melcombe and her family, volume 3, page 155:
      I should have long ere this paid my devoirs to the inhabitants of Raymond Castle.
    • 1836 July, “London Fashionable Chit-Chat”, The Lady's Magazine and Museum of the Belles-lettres, Fine Arts, Music, Drama, Fashions, &c., volume IX, London: Dobbs & Co., Hemlock Court, Carey Street, Lincolns Inn (Formerly at 112, Fetter Lane), OCLC 5140771156, page 73:
      [M]y eyes were oft times [on the] charmante maitresse de la maison, who glided among her guests in her flowing Spanish mantilla, and train of the clearest blonde, doing her devoirs with winning kindness, and showing how much benevolence of manner adds to beauty.
    • 1873 March, Henry James, “The Madonna of the Future”, in The Atlantic Monthly:
      A young man who arrives at Florence late in the evening, and, instead of going prosaically to bed, or hanging over the travellers' book at his hotel, walks forth without loss of time to pay his devoirs to the beautiful, is a young man after my own heart!
    • 1885, Sir Richard Burton, The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, volume 1:
      Then quoth the portress to the mistress of the house, "O my lady, arise and go to thy place that I in turn may do my devoir."
    • 1983, Lawrence Durrell, Sebastian, Faber & Faber, published 2004 (Avignon Quintet), page 1057:
      That is the little bit of essential information which enables us to complete our devoir – without it we are just ordinary people, dispossessed, taken unawares: the original sin!

Anagrams[edit]


French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French deveir, from Latin dēbēre ‎(must), present active infinitive of dēbeō.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

devoir m ‎(plural devoirs)

  1. duty
  2. exercise (set for homework)

Derived terms[edit]

Verb[edit]

devoir

  1. must, to have to (as a requirement)
  2. must, to do or have with certainty
  3. (transitive) to owe (money, obligation and etc)
  4. (literary, intransitive, in imperfect subjunctive, with inversion of subject) (even) though it be necessary (+ infinitive)
    • 1842, George Sand, Consuelo:
      Eh bien, se dit-elle, j'irai, dussé-je affronter les dangers réels [...]. ⇒ Well, she said to herself, I'll go, even if I have to face real danger.
  5. (reflexive, ~ à) to have a duty to

Conjugation[edit]

Usage notes[edit]

  • The past participle drops the circumflex accent in its other forms: feminine singular due; masculine plural dus; feminine plural dues.

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


Old French[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Latin dēbēre, present active infinitive of dēbeō ‎(I owe).

Verb[edit]

devoir

  1. (modal) to have to; must
  2. to owe

Conjugation[edit]

This verb conjugates as a third-group verb. This verb has a stressed present stem doiv distinct from the unstressed stem dev, as well as other irregularities. Old French conjugation varies significantly by date and by region. The following conjugation should be treated as a guide.

  • The trema on the u of the past participle deü is not used by all authors.
  • The feminine forms of the past participle are more commonly spelled due and dues, though deue and deues are attested.

Noun[edit]

devoir m ‎(oblique plural devoirs, nominative singular devoirs, nominative plural devoir)

  1. debt

Descendants[edit]

  • English: due (from past participle deu, deü)
  • Middle French: debvoir

References[edit]

  • (fr) Godefroy, Frédéric, Dictionnaire de l'ancienne langue française et de tous ses dialectes du IXe au XVe siècle (1881) (devoir)
  • “Appendix E: Irregular Verbs” in E. Einhorn (1974), Old French: A Concise Handbook, Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-09838-6, pages 152–153