From Middle English mote, from Old French mote (“mound, embankment”); compare also Old French motte (“hillock, lump, clod, turf”), from Medieval Latin mota (“a mound, hill”), of Germanic origin, perhaps via Frankish *mot, *motta (“mud, peat, bog, turf”), from Proto-Germanic *mutô, *mudraz, *muþraz (“dirt, filth, mud, swamp”), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)mut- (“dark, dirty”). Cognate with Alemannic German Mott, Mutte (“peat, turf”), Bavarian Mott (“peat, turf”), dialectal Dutch mot (“dust, fine sand”), Saterland Frisian mut (“grit, litter, humus”), Swedish muta (“to drizzle”), Old English mot (“speck, particle”). More at mote, mud, smut.
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /məʊt/
Audio (UK) (file)
- (General American) IPA(key): /moʊt/
- Rhymes: -əʊt
- Homophone: mote
moat (plural moats)
- A deep, wide defensive ditch, normally filled with water, surrounding a fortified habitation.
- (business, figuratively) An aspect of a business which makes it more "defensible" from competitors, either because of the nature of its products, services, franchise or other reason. (Can we add an example for this sense?)
- A circular lowland between a resurgent dome and the walls of the caldera surrounding it.
- (obsolete) A hill or mound.
- Nominative plural form of moa.