darling

noun
dar·​ling | \ ˈdär-liŋ How to pronounce darling (audio) \

Definition of darling

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a dearly loved person
2 : favorite a director who is the darling of the critics

darling

adjective

Definition of darling (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : dearly loved : favorite
2 : very pleasing : charming

Darling

geographical name
Dar·​ling | \ ˈdär-liŋ How to pronounce Darling (audio) \

Definition of Darling (Entry 3 of 3)

river 1702 miles (2738 kilometers) long in southeastern Australia in Queensland and New South Wales flowing southwest into the Murray River

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Other Words from darling

Adjective

darlingly \ ˈdär-​liŋ-​lē How to pronounce darlingly (audio) \ adverb
darlingness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for darling

Synonyms: Noun

fave, favorite, minion, pet, preference, speed

Synonyms: Adjective

beloved, cherished, dear, fair-haired, favored, favorite, fond, loved, pet, precious, special, sweet, white-headed

Antonyms: Adjective

unbeloved

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Did You Know?

Noun

The origins of "darling" can be found in the very heart of the English language; its earliest known uses can be traced back to Old English writings from the 9th century. Old English "deorling" was formed by attaching the Old English suffix -ling ("one associated with or marked by a specified quality") with the adjective "dēore," the ancestor of our adjective "dear" ("regarded very affectionately or fondly," "highly valued or esteemed," "beloved"). English speakers appear to have developed a fondness for "darling" and have held on to it for over a thousand years now. And though its spelling has changed over time - including variations such as "dyrling," "derlinge," and "dearling" - "darling" has maintained its original sense of "one dearly loved."

Examples of darling in a Sentence

Noun

She was mother's little darling. for a while that candidate was the darling of the news media and could do no wrong

Adjective

This is my darling daughter, Sara. That dress is just darling.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The show first aired early last year on FX, and in the months since, it's become something of an awards season darling, winning multiple Emmys and earning Darren Criss a Golden Globe for his performance as serial killer Andrew Cunanan. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "How to Watch The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story," 27 Jan. 2019 Or former Golden Globe darlings like This Is Us, Westworld, and The Handmaid’s Tale. Alissa Wilkinson, Vox, "3 winners and 2 losers from the 2019 Golden Globes nominations," 6 Dec. 2018 While titles like Rocket League or Threes might occasionally become media darlings, the vast majority of titles that get coverage are ones rooted in some sort of narrative. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Observations and lessons from two decades of writing about video games," 25 Nov. 2018 Bowls of popcorn balance on their laps, iPhones raised to snap photos of the Democratic socialist darling in one of New York City’s most instagrammable environments. Jessica Wakeman, Glamour, "How The Wing Became a Secret Weapon For Midterm Candidates," 30 Oct. 2018 Too many investors forgot the lesson of the dot-com bubble of the late 1990s that being a darling of digital innovation isn’t inoculation against the classic dilemmas that afflict all young and fast-growing companies. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Investors Unlike Facebook," 26 July 2018 Despite her own 2019 Grammy nomination and her boyfriend, Joe Alwyn, appearing in the awards season darling The Favourite, Swift was conspicuously absent from the bulk of music and film's recent red-carpet events. Glamour, "Taylor Swift Wore a $250 Sequined Romper for Her First Red Carpet of 2019," 15 Mar. 2019 Thus the dearth of dire wolves, versus the proliferation of darling dachshunds. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "Why Are Some Animals Impossible To Domesticate?," 13 Mar. 2019 But it is geared toward top executives rather than rank-and-file employees, and Fortune 500 companies rather than startup darlings. Liz Hoffman, WSJ, "Morgan Stanley, in Its Biggest Deal Since Crisis, Courts Future Millionaires," 11 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Across the way is the most darling wood-burning stove—plus solar, water, battery, and load meters. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "Just Wait Until You See the Inside of This Horse Truck-Turned-Tiny Home," 4 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'darling.' 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 darling

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for darling

Noun

Middle English derling, from Old English dēorling, from dēore dear

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Learn More about darling

Dictionary Entries near darling

dark whites

darky

Darlan

darling

Darling

Darling lily

Darling pea

Statistics for darling

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for darling

The first known use of darling was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for darling

darling

noun

English Language Learners Definition of darling

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person you love very much
: a kind and helpful person
: someone who is liked very much by a person or group

darling

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of darling (Entry 2 of 2)

: greatly loved
informal : very pleasing or attractive

darling

noun
dar·​ling | \ ˈdär-liŋ How to pronounce darling (audio) \

Kids Definition of darling

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a dearly loved person
2 : favorite entry 1 He is the darling of golf fans.

darling

adjective

Kids Definition of darling (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : dearly loved Come here, darling child.
2 : very pleasing : charming a darling little house

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More from Merriam-Webster on darling

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with darling

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for darling

Spanish Central: Translation of darling

Nglish: Translation of darling for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of darling for Arabic Speakers

Comments on darling

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