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adjective \ˈkwānt\

Simple Definition of quaint

  • : having an old-fashioned or unusual quality or appearance that is usually attractive or appealing

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of quaint

  1. 1 obsolete :  expert, skilled

  2. 2 a :  marked by skillful design <quaint with many a device in India ink — Herman Melville> b :  marked by beauty or elegance

  3. 3 a :  unusual or different in character or appearance :  odd b :  pleasingly or strikingly old-fashioned or unfamiliar <a quaint phrase>

quaintly adverb
quaintness noun

Examples of quaint in a sentence

  1. A lot can change in 25 years, and Yountville has gone from an also-ran on the Napa food-and-wine tourism scene to the focus of activity. The quaint bed and breakfasts of yesterday have been replaced by upscale hotels and inns, and the village has become a mecca for top chefs. —Tim Fish, Wine Spectator, 15 June 2008

  2. Therefore, when the federal Constitutional Convention decided in 1787 that U.S. senators would be appointed by state legislatures rather than elected by the people at large, the drafters were actually placing the choice of U.S. senators in the control of state leaders who had met their states' highest qualifications for property and religion. Today, these property and religious qualifications are likely to strike us as quaint historical oddities. —Richard N. Rosenfeld, Harper's, May 2004

  3. Five minutes by ferry from the bustling concrete depths of Wall Street sits what could be a quaint New England town: stately, collegiate buildings framed by tree-lined walkways where the wind rustles through aging oak trees. —Andrea Elliott,New York Times, 25 July 2003

  4. The fishing village was very quaint.

  5. The writer talks about the quaint customs of the natives.

Origin of quaint

Middle English queinte, cointe, from Anglo-French, clever, expert, from Latin cognitus, past participle of cognoscere to know — more at cognition

First Known Use: 13th century

Synonym Discussion of quaint

strange, singular, unique, peculiar, eccentric, erratic, odd, quaint, outlandish mean departing from what is ordinary, usual, or to be expected. strange stresses unfamiliarity and may apply to the foreign, the unnatural, the unaccountable <a journey filled with strange sights>. singular suggests individuality or puzzling strangeness <a singular feeling of impending disaster>. unique implies singularity and the fact of being without a known parallel <a career unique in the annals of science>. peculiar implies a marked distinctiveness <the peculiar status of America's first lady>. eccentric suggests a wide divergence from the usual or normal especially in behavior <the eccentric eating habits of preschoolers>. erratic stresses a capricious and unpredictable wandering or deviating <a friend's suddenly erratic behavior>. odd applies to a departure from the regular or expected <an odd sense of humor>. quaint suggests an old-fashioned but pleasant oddness <a quaint fishing village>. outlandish applies to what is uncouth, bizarre, or barbaric <outlandish fashions of the time>.

Rhymes with quaint

QUAINT Defined for Kids


adjective \ˈkwānt\

Definition of quaint for Students


  1. :  pleasingly old-fashioned or unfamiliar <quaint customs>

quaintly adverb
quaintness noun

Seen and Heard

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expressing little or no emotion

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