What Is The Origin Of The Word Doubt?


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Will Martin answered
This word is derived from Latin dubitare, "to hesitate." In Old French it was douter, then in Middle English douten. The (now silent) "b" may have been added due to influence from the word double (doubt often has the meaning of hesitating between two things) as well as from the original Latin word.

The Latin root can be seen more clearly in the related adjective, dubious, and the rare noun, dubiety. Dubious can either mean "not to be trusted" as in "I wouldn't give him money -he looks a bit dubious" or a feeling of uncertainty as in "I'm a bit dubious about the whole project."

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