Dowsabel...I suppose it does sound a bit down-trodden and dreary, but it means something lovely, because it means sweetheart. A female sweetheart, that is.
I say that dowsabel is almost universally neglected, because there is one place where dowsabel is still heard, and that's in Shakespeare's farce A Comedy of Errors.
What happens when you appear in a strange town and, unbeknownst to you, you have a long-lost twin in the place?
I mean, just think: what if your long-lost twin happens to be romantically entangled?
Poor old Dromio.
DROMIO OF SYRACUSE: ...Adriana! that is where...Dowsabel did claim me for her husband
Anyway, if it so happens that you're lucky enough not to have a long-lost twin around the place, then dowsabel can still be a jolly useful word. Men, a gentle murmer of you are my lovely dowsabel in an appropriate ear, and (if necessary) an explanation that it's from Shakespeare and means sweetheart, will melt all but the stoniest female heart (and if her heart's that stony I should clear out straight away, while you've got the chance).
Children: surely any quotation from Shakespeare will prove good for a few Brownie points.
As for the ladies...hm...well, I suppose if you're lucky you might get a theatre trip out of the word, mightn't you. Or at least a snuggly evening in with chocolate and a DVD.
Word To Use Today: dowsabel. This word comes from the Latin girl's name Dulcibella, from dulcis sweet and bellus beautiful.