favor

noun
fa·​vor | \ ˈfā-vər How to pronounce favor (audio) \

Definition of favor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : friendly regard shown toward another especially by a superior a politician attempting to keep the favor of the voters
(2) : approving consideration or attention : approbation looked with favor on the enterprise
b : partiality The students naturally showed favor toward their own team.
c archaic : leniency
d archaic : permission
e : popularity The fad lost favor quickly.

2 archaic

b(1) : face
(2) : a facial feature
3a : gracious kindness also : an act of such kindness did you a favor
b archaic : aid, assistance
c favors plural : effort in one's behalf or interest : attention vying for the king's favor
4a : a token of love (such as a ribbon) usually worn conspicuously
b : a small gift or decorative item given out at a party
c : badge
5a : a special privilege or right granted or conceded granted a favor to a dear friend
b : sexual privileges usually used in plural
6 archaic : letter
7 : behalf, interest a man who acts only in his own favor
in favor of
1a : in accord or sympathy with
b : to the benefit of : in support of a verdict in favor of the accused
2 : to the order of
3 : in order to choose : out of preference for turned down the scholarship in favor of a pro career
in one's favor
1 : in one's good graces wanted to get back in the teacher's favor
2 : to one's advantage The judge ruled in our favor.
out of favor
: unpopular, disliked Her ideas are now out of favor.

favor

verb
favored; favoring\ ˈfā-​v(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce favoring (audio) \

Definition of favor (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to regard or treat with favor
b(1) : to do a kindness for : oblige
(2) : endow
c : to treat gently or carefully favored her injured leg
2 : to show partiality toward : prefer
3a : to give support or confirmation to : sustain
b : to afford advantages for success to : facilitate good weather favored the outing
4 : to bear a resemblance to he favors his father

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Other Words from favor

Verb

favorer \ ˈfā-​vər-​ər How to pronounce favorer (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for favor

Synonyms: Noun

benevolence, boon, courtesy, grace, indulgence, kindness, mercy, service, turn

Synonyms: Verb

accommodate, oblige

Antonyms: Verb

disoblige

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Examples of favor in a Sentence

Noun

I drove her to the airport because I owed her a favor. She's willing to help you but only as a favor to me. Don't do me any favors. I don't need your help. I've learned to be grateful for small favors. He's trying to earn the boss's favor by working late. The judge showed favor for the defendant. The students naturally showed favor toward their own school's team. Small boxes of candy were given out as favors at the wedding.

Verb

The teacher clearly favors you. Most voters favor these tax cuts. Her father favored the idea of her going to law school. They won the championship last year, and most forecasters favor them to win again this year.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Later this afternoon, Meghan switched from her green coat into a white ensemble complete with a pillbox hat, a fashion staple that gained favor with Jackie Onassis Kennedy and Princess Diana. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Just Received The Cutest Gifts For Baby Sussex," 11 Mar. 2019 Get ready to stash your beanie away in favor of these spring hair trends. Glamour, "27 Cool Spring Hairstyles to Try (or Just Stare at) This Season," 11 Mar. 2019 Local port officials in Dalian, hoping to curry favor with Beijing, may have concluded that the best course of action was to stick it to the Aussies. Nathaniel Taplin, WSJ, "China Still Needs Your Coal, Australia," 22 Feb. 2019 Foreign dignitaries and others looking to curry favor with the president appear to have taken a keen interest in spending money at his hotels as well. Emily Stewart, Vox, "Ivanka Trump reportedly advocated for a tax break she and Jared Kushner could profit from," 12 Dec. 2018 The quota also helps politicians curry favor with heavy corn-producing midwest states like Iowa, Nebraska, and Indiana, which supported Trump in the most recent presidential elections. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "EPA reconsidering biofuel targets after production goals are missed," 25 Nov. 2018 While President Emmanuel Macron of France has tried to curry favor with Mr. Trump, playing the role of the devoted mentee, Ms. Merkel has kept her distance. Steven Erlanger, New York Times, "Trump vs. Merkel: Blistering Salvo Meets Quiet Rejoinder," 11 July 2018 And while no age group is seeing an increase in divorce rates, the decline has been pinned to Millennials, who have some trends working in their favor. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "The U.S. Divorce Rate Is Going Down, and We Have Millennials to Thank," 27 Feb. 2019 While both signs do have a tendency to take it slowly and wait for the right moment to make a move, this works so beautifully in their favor. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "These Celebrity Couples Will Have the Hottest Valentine's Day, According to their Zodiac Signs," 14 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

But that's a sensible and practical decision driven by the fact that the world of laptop accessories has more or less favored USB over more proprietary standards. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "Why the iPhone Won't Dump Lightning for USB-C Even Though the iPad Pro Did," 11 Feb. 2019 So bless celebrity makeup artist Jami Svay, who favors one skin- and hair-care product that barely costs a thing: castor oil. Blake Bakkila, Good Housekeeping, "Why Castor Oil Is the Secret to Flawless Skin and Healthy Hair," 14 Jan. 2019 The Republican party has traditionally favored less, not more, regulation of business. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Republicans are mad at Google for search bias—will they do anything about it?," 12 Dec. 2018 That will offer the Trump administration an opportunity to pick a judge who favors race-blind admissions policies, experts said. Deirdre Fernandes, BostonGlobe.com, "Trump administration changes course on affirmative action," 4 July 2018 Either way, no team would support a commissioner who favors the competitive interests of one team and tries to manipulate player transactions in order to benefit that team. Michael Mccann, SI.com, "DeMarcus Cousins and the NBA's Efforts to Keep Competitive Balance," 3 July 2018 Last month, apparently at Rubio’s insistence, the State Department canceled an annual seminar on Cuba that would have featured speakers who favor rapprochement. Tracy Wilkinson, latimes.com, "A year after Trump reversed Obama's opening to Cuba, the U.S. is sitting out Havana's political revamp," 22 June 2018 However, George Borjas, a Harvard University economist who favors more strict immigration, told the Los Angeles Times that wages are still too low for American workers to accept farm jobs. Sarah Gray, Fortune, "Here's How Immigration Policy Impacts Your Avocados and Other Produce," 19 June 2018 Like, The Surfrider Malibu—an intimate hotel with a gorgeously minimal design favoring whites and light greys. Max Maeckler, Vogue, "Going to the Oscars? The Best L.A. Hotels for Every Hollywood Type," 22 Feb. 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for favor

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin, from favēre to be favorable; perhaps akin to Old High German gouma attention, Old Church Slavonic gověti to revere

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Dictionary Entries near favor

favilla

favism

favonian

favor

favorable

favored

favoring

Statistics for favor

Last Updated

20 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for favor

The first known use of favor was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for favor

favor

noun

English Language Learners Definition of favor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a kind or helpful act that you do for someone
: approval, support, or popularity
: preference for one person, group, etc., over another

favor

verb

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

: to prefer (someone) especially in an unfair way : to show that you like or approve of (someone) more than others
: to approve of or support (something)
: to regard (someone or something) as most likely to succeed or win

favor

noun
fa·​vor | \ ˈfā-vər How to pronounce favor (audio) \

Kids Definition of favor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act of kindness Do me a favor.
2 : approval sense 1, liking They look with favor on protecting wildlife.
3 : a preference for one side over another The umpire showed favor toward the champs.
4 : a small gift or decorative item party favors
in favor of
1 : wanting or approving of All in favor of going say aye.
2 : in support of The judge ruled in favor of the defendant.

favor

verb
favored; favoring

Kids Definition of favor (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to prefer especially unfairly My mom always favors my little brother.
2 : to approve of The president favors a bill to cut taxes.
3 : to present with The author favored us with a copy of her book.
4 : to make possible or easier Winds favored the ship's journey east.
5 : to look like He favors his mother.

favor

noun
fa·​vor

Legal Definition of favor

1 : bias
2 : benefit
in favor of
: to the benefit of a judgment in favor of the defendant
in oneʼs favor
: to one's benefit a donation inter vivos made in his favor

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More from Merriam-Webster on favor

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with favor

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for favor

Spanish Central: Translation of favor

Nglish: Translation of favor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of favor for Arabic Speakers

Comments on favor

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