dander

noun dan·der \ ˈdan-dər \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of dander

1 : dandruff; specifically : minute scales from hair, feathers, or skin that may be allergenic
2 : anger, temper
  • now don't get your dander up

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Recent Examples of dander from the Web

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

Did You Know?

How did "dander" acquire its "temper" sense? Etymologists have come up with a few possibilities, but nothing is known for sure. Some experts have proposed, tongue-in-cheek, that the meaning stems from the image of an angry person tearing out his or her hair by the fistful, scattering dandruff in the process. Some think it may come from a West Indian word dander, which refers to a kind of ferment and suggests "rising" anger (in English, "ferment" can mean either "an agent capable of causing fermentation" or "a state of unrest or excitement"). Yet another proposed possibility is that the anger sense was imported to America by early Dutch colonists and is from their phrase op donderen, meaning "to burst into a sudden rage."

Origin and Etymology of dander

alteration of dandruff



DANDER Defined for Kids

dander

noun dan·der \ ˈdan-dər \

Definition of dander for Students

1 : tiny scales from hair, feathers, or skin that may cause allergic reactions
2 : 2anger
  • The insults got my dander up.

Medical Dictionary

dander

noun dan·der \ ˈdan-dər \

medical Definition of dander

: dandruff; specifically : minute scales from hair, feathers, or skin that may act as allergens

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of very fine texture or delicate form

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