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Related to dastard: nerveless, dastardliness, craven


A sneaking, malicious coward.

[Middle English, probably alteration of Old Norse dæstr, exhausted, from past participle of dæsa, to languish, decay.]


archaic a contemptible sneaking coward
[C15 (in the sense: dullard): probably from Old Norse dæstr exhausted, out of breath]


(ˈdæs tərd)

a mean, sneaking coward.
[1400–50; late Middle English, akin to Middle English dasard term of contempt, perhaps derivative of dasen daze]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.dastard - a despicable coward
coward - a person who shows fear or timidity
Adj.1.dastard - despicably cowardly; "the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on...December 7th"- F.D. Roosevelt
cowardly, fearful - lacking courage; ignobly timid and faint-hearted; "cowardly dogs, ye will not aid me then"- P.B.Shelley


An ignoble, uncourageous person:
References in classic literature ?
She is not a woman to be flattered because I made myself despicable-- to believe that I must be true to her because I was a dastard to you.
Liar and scoundrel you are, in every action of your life; theft is your trade; and double dastard you must be, or you were not here today.
Since, if base fear his dastard step withdraws, From death he cannot fly:--One common grave Receives, at last, the coward and the brave.
Oh, dastard hand," Peter said, and he raised the arrow to use it as a dagger.
And now, my friends - my labouring friends, for I rejoice and triumph in that stigma - my friends whose hard but honest beds are made in toil, and whose scanty but independent pots are boiled in hardship; and now, I say, my friends, what appellation has that dastard craven taken to himself, when, with the mask torn from his features, he stands before us in all his native deformity, a What?
Yes, you pitiful dastard,' retorted the lovely damsel, 'I understand you.
For, he was quite as much of a dastard as the other, and had been in equal danger of falling into the second place for good, when he took heart just in time, to act upon the information conveyed to him by Fledgeby's eye.
Then, having said everything that could stir a man's spleen or pique his valor, they would dare their imaginary hearers, now that the Bannacks were few in number, to come and take their revenge--receiving no reply to this valorous bravado, they would conclude by all kinds of sneers and insults, deriding the Blackfeet for dastards and poltroons, that dared not accept their challenge.
On one theme, which is commonly before our eyes, and in respect of which our national character is changing fast, let the plain Truth be spoken, and let us not, like dastards, beat about the bush by hinting at the Spaniard and the fierce Italian.
However, the DSS, in its early brief to the government, included a vital information ignored by virtually all of us due to the overwhelming emotion brought about by the numbers of people butchered and the dastard nature of the attacks.
The influence of dastard politics has been responsible to a greater extent which civil societies of India are always pleading to the modern generations about these grim scenarios like scuffling between teachers and taught or contrarily unethical acts by some unscrupulous teachers of India.
The Tunisian official, for her part, blasted Saudi Arabia's dastard attacks on the poor Yemeni people that have claimed the lives of over 12,000 of them so far.