antic

noun
an·​tic | \ ˈan-tik How to pronounce antic (audio) \

Definition of antic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an attention-drawing, often wildly playful or funny act or action : caper usually plural childish antics
2 archaic : a performer of a grotesque or ludicrous part : buffoon

antic

adjective

Definition of antic (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : characterized by clownish extravagance or absurdity an antic farce
b : whimsically lighthearted : frolicsome Gelbart's intelligence is antic and playful.— Lloyd Rose
2 archaic : grotesque, bizarre

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Other Words from antic

Adjective

antically \ ˈan-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce antically (audio) \ adverb

Did You Know?

Adjective

When Renaissance Italians began exploring the ancient Roman ruins around them, they discovered fantastic mural paintings that they called grottesca (which means "grotesques," a name given to the paintings because they were found in caves, or grotte). Because they were so old, the murals were also called antichi, or "ancient things." English speakers adopted antichi, modifying it to antike or anticke, and eventually any behavior or dress reminiscent of the kind depicted in the Roman murals became known as an antic. Within 20 years of its earliest recorded uses as a noun, antic began appearing as an English adjective. Originally, it meant "grotesque" or "bizarre" (a sense now considered archaic), but today it means "playful, funny, or absurd" and the noun means "an often wildly playful or funny act."

Examples of antic in a Sentence

Noun

we'll have no more of your antics, so just settle down

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Sports news around the world focused on Maradona’s antics after Argentina won the game that will keep them in the World Cup competition. Judy Cantor-navas, Billboard, "Maradona Blues: Argentine Soccer God Slammed for Behavior at Argentina-Nigeria World Cup Game," 27 June 2018 Romo vouched for Bryant as a teammate and believes there is a misconception on Bryant’s antics on the sidelines. Drew Davison, star-telegram, "Tony Romo on Dez Bryant-less Cowboys: Someone (Terrance Williams?) will step up | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 30 Apr. 2018 Check out all the antics that were had in the video below. Gabe Bergado, Teen Vogue, "Watch Ross Lynch Attempt to Draw His "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina" Co-Stars Kiernan Shipka and Gavin Leatherwood," 10 Apr. 2019 That said, two-wheel-drive mode does allow for some roosting and tail-kicking antics on low-grip surfaces like sand. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "Can-Am's Outlander DPS 650 Is the Do-Anything ATV," 10 Jan. 2019 Amber, in the classic disguise of a beret and sunglasses, has to weather the paparazzi, and the antics of a kooky (and possibly insensitively) conceived wedding planner. Vogue, "A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding," 15 Nov. 2018 As such, this game carries massive implications for Iran, and their fans know that throwing off Portuguese talisman Ronaldo is there best hope in getting something from the game - thus the late night antics. SI.com, "Cristiano Ronaldo Reacts to Late-Night Antics of Iranian Fans Ahead of Crucial World Cup Match-Up," 25 June 2018 And the former’s latest antics didn’t do anything but fuel the mill even more. refinery29.com, "Eminem Is Down To Date Nicki Minaj. She's Down For Him To Jump On A Track.," 28 May 2018 All her antics make this movie a good time for you and your mom. Seventeen, "20 Mother's Day Movies to Watch With Your Mom," 11 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The sketch showcases Burnett at her sharpest and most antic during her earliest years on TV. Tom Keogh, The Seattle Times, "Carol Burnett comes to Seattle to banter, answer questions — and possibly do the Tarzan yell," 9 Oct. 2018 The Chelsea midfielder targeted Gerard Pique as the main culprit, and also went on to tell of another antic which had the Barcelona defender's name written all over it. SI.com, "6 of the Biggest Pranksters in Football," 17 June 2018 Real life does not always lend itself to dramatic adaptation, but Davies and Frears manage to make of it something both thoughtful and antic, historical but only in the brief asides a history lesson. Robert Lloyd, latimes.com, "Hugh Grant has a killer role in Amazon's 'A Very English Scandal'," 28 June 2018 Its signature moment occurs not during the re-enactment of the inept crime, or its planning and antic aftermath. Michael O’sullivan, kansascity, "‘American Animals’: True crime that’s entertaining and profound," 21 June 2018 Queen Elizabeth II's eldest great-grandchild, Savannah Phillips, just confirmed her status as the most savage member of the royal family after pulling off another antic with her four-year-old cousin Prince George over the weekend. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Prince George Was Pushed Down a Hill By His Cousin Savannah Phillips, the Most Savage Royal," 13 June 2018 Bullwinkel’s style shifts from story to story, occasionally antic but more often than not hilariously deadpan. Michael Berry, San Francisco Chronicle, "Science fiction and fantasy books: ‘Belly Up,’ ‘What Should Be Wild,’ ‘84K’," 7 June 2018 The performance is introduced and regularly interrupted, in Italian, by Francesca Sara Toich as an antic deep-voiced commedia-style clown. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, "A Mesmerizing 'Merchant Of Venice' As Arts & Ideas Hits Its Stride," 21 June 2018 While these pieces are targeting the influential social media audience, the move toward more colorful and graphically antic clothing might confound men who spend more time staring at spreadsheets than at their Instagram feeds. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "Instagram Is Changing the Way Men Dress...for the Worse?," 30 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'antic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of antic

Noun

1529, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1548, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for antic

Noun and Adjective

Italian antico ancient thing or person, from antico ancient, from Latin antiquus — more at antique

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Statistics for antic

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for antic

The first known use of antic was in 1529

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More Definitions for antic

antic

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of antic

: very playful, funny, or silly

antic

noun
an·​tic | \ ˈan-tik How to pronounce antic (audio) \

Kids Definition of antic

: a wildly playful or funny act or action We laughed at the kitten's antics.

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More from Merriam-Webster on antic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with antic

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for antic

Spanish Central: Translation of antic

Nglish: Translation of antic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of antic for Arabic Speakers

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