fa·​cete fə-ˈsēt How to pronounce facete (audio)

Word History


borrowed from Latin facētus "clever, choosing or judging adeptly, witty," of uncertain origin

Note: Associated by ancient writers, sometimes in a punning manner, with faciō, facere "to do, make" (see fact), though this etymology is plausible neither semantically nor derivationally. A modern etymology connects it with fac-, fax "torch, light" (see facula), assuming an earlier meaning "bright" for facētus, shifting to "clever," though the assumption of a noun *facēs parallel to fax is questionable.

First Known Use

1600, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of facete was in 1600

Dictionary Entries Near facete

Cite this Entry

“Facete.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/facete. Accessed 21 Sep. 2023.

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