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1

fawn

play
verb \ˈfȯn, ˈfän\

Simple Definition of fawn

  • : to try to get the approval of an important or powerful person by giving that person praise, special attention, etc.

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of fawn

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to show affection —used especially of a dog

  3. 2 :  to court favor by a cringing or flattering manner

fawner

noun

fawningly

play \ˈfȯ-niŋ-lē, ˈfä-\ adverb

Examples of fawn in a sentence

  1. a sports star surrounded by fawning fans

  2. <a student who could not wait to fawn over the new teacher>



Did You Know?

Some people will be glad to learn the origins of "fawn"-and there's a hint about the word's etymology in that declaration. Middle English speakers adapted an Old English word meaning "to rejoice" to create the verb "faunen," which shifted in spelling over time to become "fawn." That Old English word, in turn, derives from fagan, meaning "glad." "Fagan" is also an ancestor of the English adjective "fain," whose earliest (now obsolete) meaning is "happy" or "pleased." If we follow the etymological path of "fawn" even further back, we arrive at an ancient word that also provided Old German and Old Norse with words for "happy."

Origin and Etymology of fawn

Middle English faunen, from Old English fagnian to rejoice, from fægen, fagan glad — more at fain


First Known Use: 13th century

Synonym Discussion of fawn

fawn, toady, truckle, cringe, cower mean to behave abjectly before a superior. fawn implies seeking favor by servile flattery or exaggerated attention <waiters fawning over a celebrity>. toady suggests the attempt to ingratiate oneself by an abjectly menial or subservient attitude <toadying to his boss>. truckle implies the subordination of oneself and one's desires or judgment to those of a superior <truckling to a powerful lobbyist>. cringe suggests a bowing or shrinking in fear or servility <a cringing sycophant>. cower suggests a display of abject fear in the company of threatening or domineering people <cowering before a bully>.

2

fawn

noun

Simple Definition of fawn

  • : a young deer; especially : a deer that is less than a year old

  • : a light brown color

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of fawn

  1. 1 :  a young deer; especially :  one still unweaned or retaining a distinctive baby coat

  2. 2 :  kid 1

  3. 3 :  a light grayish brown

fawny

play \ˈfȯ-nē, ˈfä-\ adjective

Origin and Etymology of fawn

Middle English foun, from Anglo-French feun, foon young of an animal, from Vulgar Latin *feton-, feto, from Latin fetus offspring — more at fetus


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Mammals Terms


FAWN Defined for Kids

1

fawn

play
noun \ˈfȯn\

Definition of fawn for Students

  1. 1 :  a young deer

  2. 2 :  a light grayish brown




2

fawn

play
verb

Definition of fawn for Students

fawned

fawning

  1. 1 :  to show affection —used especially of a dog

  2. 2 :  to try to win favor by acting as if someone is superior <Fans fawned over the actor.>





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