1. A teacher; one skilled in a profession, or branch of knowledge learned man. "One of the doctors of Italy, Nicholas Macciavel." (Bacon)

2. An academical title, originally meaning a men so well versed in his department as to be qualified to teach it. Hence: One who has taken the highest degree conferred by a university or college, or has received a diploma of the highest degree; as, a doctor of divinity, of law, of medicine, of music, or of philosophy. Such diplomas may confer an honorary title only.

3. One duly licensed to practice medicine; a member of the medical profession; a physician. "By medicine life may be prolonged, yet death Will seize the doctor too." (Shak)

4. Any mechanical contrivance intended to remedy a difficulty or serve some purpose in an exigency; as, the doctor of a calico-printing machine, which is a knife to remove superfluous colouring matter; the doctor, or auxiliary engine, called also donkey engine.

5. <zoology> The friar skate. Doctors' Commons. See Commons. Doctor's stuff, physic, medicine.

<zoology> Doctor fish, any fish of the genus Acanthurus; the surgeon fish; so called from a sharp lancetlike spine on each side of the tail. Also called barber fish. See Surgeon fish.

Origin: OF. Doctur, L. Doctor, teacher, fr. Docere to teach. See Docile.

6. To treat as a physician does; to apply remedies to; to repair; as, to doctor a sick man or a broken cart.

7. To confer a doctorate upon; to make a doctor.

8. To tamper with and arrange for one's own purposes; to falsify; to adulterate; as, to doctor election returns; to doctor whisky.

Origin: Doctored; Doctoring.

(01 Mar 1998)