Definition of motte in English:

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Pronunciation: /mät/


1 (also mott) US A stand of trees, especially in the southwestern US; a grove.
Example sentences
  • You stand to either side of the motte and send a flushing dog inside.
  • Much of the dense brush was limited to rivers, creeks, drainages, and in small mottes on the prairie.
  • A vague whir from the motte caught my attention.
2 historical A mound forming the site of a castle or camp.
Example sentences
  • Modern steps curve up the side of the motte (the castle mound), one of the largest in the country.
  • The Norman castle motte known as Twt Hill probably overlies the site of the palace constructed by Llywelyn ap Seisyll in 1015.
  • That Edward's fortress incorporated the motte of an earlier Norman castle indicates that here castle-building actually signified a re-conquest of territory.


Late 19th century: from French, 'mound', from Old French mote (see moat).

Words that rhyme with motte

allot, begot, Bernadotte, blot, bot, capot, clot, cocotte, cot, culotte, dot, forgot, garrotte (US garrote), gavotte, got, grot, hot, jot, knot, lot, Mayotte, not, Ott, outshot, plot, pot, rot, sans-culotte, Scot, Scott, shallot, shot, slot, snot, sot, spot, squat, stot, swat, swot, tot, trot, undershot, Wat, Watt, what, wot, yacht

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: motte

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