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From Middle English dighten, dihten, (also dyten, from whence dite), from Old English dihtan, dihtian (to set in order; dispose; arrange; appoint; direct; compose), from Proto-Germanic *dihtōną (to compose; invent), of disputed origin. Possibly from a derivative of Proto-Germanic *dīkaną (to arrange; create; perform), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰeyǵ-, *dʰeyǵʰ- (to knead; shape; mold; build), influenced by Latin dictāre; or perhaps from Latin dictāre (to dictate) itself. See dictate; and also parallel formations in German dichten, Dutch dichten, Swedish dikta.



dight (third-person singular simple present dights, present participle dighting, simple past and past participle dight or dighted)

  1. (obsolete, transitive) To deal with, handle.
  2. (obsolete, transitive) To have sexual intercourse with.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Geoffrey Chaucer, The Manciple's Prologue:
      Ne telleth nevere no man in youre lyf
      How that another man hath dight his wyf;
  3. (obsolete, transitive) To dispose, put (in a given state or condition).
  4. (obsolete, transitive) To compose, make.
    • 14thc., Anonymous, The Chester Mystery Plays, Noah's Flood:
      Japhet's Wife: And I will gather chippes here / To make a fyer for you in feare, / And for to dighte your dinnere / Agayne you come in.
  5. (archaic, transitive, of facial features) To be formed or composed (of).
    • 1885, Richard F. Burton, The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night:
      [] nor is there found, in sea or on land, a sweeter or pleasanter of gifts than she; for she is prime in comeliness and seemlihead of face and symmetrical shape of perfect grace; her check is ruddy dight, her brow flower white, her teeth gem-bright, her eyes blackest black and whitest white, her hips of heavy weight, her waist slight and her favour exquisite.
  6. (archaic, transitive) To furnish, equip.
    • 1485, Sir Thomas Malory, chapter xv, in Le Morte Darthur, book II:
      And whan balyn was wepenles he ranne in to a chamber for to seke somme wepen / and soo fro chamber to chamber / and no wepen he coude fynde / and alweyes kynge Pellam after hym / And at the last he entryd in to a chambyr that was merueillously wel dyȝte and rychely
  7. (archaic, transitive) To dress, array; to adorn.
    • 1645, John Milton, L'Allegro:
      Right against the eastern gate, / Where the great sun begins his state, / Robed in flames, and amber light, / The clouds in thousand liveries dight [].
  8. (archaic, transitive) To make ready, prepare.

Derived terms[edit]



  1. (obsolete) Disposed; adorned.



  1. (obsolete) Finely.
    Synonym: dightly