amour

noun

ə-ˈmu̇r How to pronounce amour (audio)
ä-,
a-
: a usually illicit love affair
wrote of his amours in his memoirs
also : lover

Examples of amour in a Sentence

memoirs devoted to accounts of his amours in her memoirs the diva candidly recalls her amours with some of opera's best-known tenors and baritones
Recent Examples on the Web The movie doesn’t want to be a four-alarm funeral pyre but a tragic romance, presenting Amy through the prism of the amour fou that put her into a tailspin and fueled her triple-platinum second album. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 14 May 2024 Eileen has been, up to this point, a bruised slice-of-life drama, a dingy-retro period piece, and possibly a romance just waiting to rev its amour fou engine. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 2 Dec. 2023 Perhaps for the harder hit amour, in the U.K., supermarket chain Asda — previously owned by Walmart WMT -0.1% — has launched a $1.24 (that’s £1) engagement ring as part of its George Home collection, which is available to buy in its stores and online. Mark Faithfull, Forbes, 26 Jan. 2023 This is a tale of amour fou, in which lust tramples everything in its path – family, respectability, and ultimately sanity. Chris Vognar, Rolling Stone, 13 Apr. 2023 But now the amour for Roman seems to have stopped. Nick Vivarelli, Variety, 22 May 2022 There’s no implied amour, no tittering innuendo. Raven Smith, Vogue, 6 Aug. 2020 Luis Guzmán will play her amour Gomez. Bethy Squires, Vulture, 16 Sep. 2021 Acrobatic amour, in perfect synchronicity. BostonGlobe.com, 4 Feb. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'amour.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Middle English amour, amoure "affection, love between the sexes, spiritual love," borrowed from Anglo-French amur, amour, ameur (also continental Old French), going back to Latin amōr-, amor "affection, liking, love, sexual passion, illicit or homosexual passion," from am-, base of amāre "to have affection for, love, be in love, make love to" + -ōr-, -or, abstract noun suffix (going back to *-ōs) — more at amateur

Note: The regular outcome of Latin amor in modern French should be *ameur, not amour, and the discrepancy has been explained in a number of ways: as re-formation after the adjective amoureux "amorous"; as due to the influence of Anglo-French; as the outcome of -ō- in the dialect of medieval eastern Champagne, a significant courtly center; as a semantic split, ameur being restricted to the sense "rutting season of ungulates"; as due to the influence of ecclesiastical Latin. Probably the most popular hypothesis sees amour as a borrowing from Old Occitan, due to the influence of troubador verse. — Both the current modern meanings and the English pronunciation with stress on the second syllable are presumably due to reborrowing from French.

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of amour was in the 14th century

Cite this Entry

“Amour.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/amour. Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

amour

noun
: a love affair
especially : a secret love affair

More from Merriam-Webster on amour

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