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to dress or adorn in a showy, gaudy, or tasteless manner.
Historical Examples

If Julia Cunningham chooses to bedizen herself in it, she is welcome to it—flounces and all.
At Last Marion Harland

When I was young they died for that with which they now bedizen themselves.’
Hypatia Charles Kingsley

Prithee, young one, who art thou, and what has ailed thy mother to bedizen thee in this strange fashion?
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne

A refined woman will always look neat; but, on the other hand, she will not bedizen and bedeck herself with a view to display.
How to be Happy Though Married E. J. Hardy.

Is not your body a far more beautiful and nobler thing than all the gay clothes with which you can bedizen it?
Sermons for the Times Charles Kingsley

I will so bedizen your virile, though somewhat crassly practical gifts—— Why, women are my long suit.
Free Air Sinclair Lewis

The French chamarrer, to deck out, or bedizen, is said to be a word of kindred origin.
The Bible in Spain – Vol. 2 [of 2] George Borrow

I don’t know what sort of a way you’d bedizen yourself out if I’d let you, I’m sure.
Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, 1907 to 1908 Lucy Maud Montgomery

We shall have plenty of time if this prince takes as long to bedizen himself as he used to do.
Lord Montagu’s Page G. P. R. James

I’st teach yo to burn three candles down awbut to nothink ‘at yo may bedizen yorsel in this way.
The History of David Grieve Mrs. Humphry Ward

(transitive) (archaic) to dress or decorate gaudily or tastelessly

1660s, from be- + dizen “to dress” (1610s), especially, from late 18c., “to dress finely, adorn,” originally “to dress (a distaff) for spinning” (1520s), and evidently the verbal form of the first element in distaff.

It is remarkable that neither the vb., nor the sb. as a separate word, has been found in OE. or ME., and that on the other hand no vb. corresponding to dizen is known in L.G. or Du. [OED]


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  • Be down

    Be depressed, in low spirits, as in During the winter months Sue’s always down, but spring cheers her up. [ ; mid-1800s ] Be knowledgeable, canny, or sophisticated, as in He was really down with the new group. This usage probably originated among jazz musicians. [ ; mid-1940s ]

  • Bedrabble

    to drench or muddy.

  • Bedraggle

    to make limp and soiled, as with rain or dirt. Historical Examples Instead of cultivating your graces you bedraggle them with labor! For Gold or Soul? Lurana W. Sheldon verb (transitive) to make (hair, clothing, etc) limp, untidy, or dirty, as with rain or mud v. 1727, from be- + draggle, frequentative of drag.

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