Definition of jejune
- jejune lectures
- jejune diets
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She made jejune remarks about life and art.
another moralizing tale filled with jejune platitudes
Starved for excitement? You won't get it from something jejune. That term derives from the Latin jejunus, which means "empty of food," "meager," or "hungry." Back in the 1600s, English speakers used jejune in senses very similar to those of its Latin parent, lamenting "jejune appetites" and "jejune morsels." Something that is meager rarely satisfies, and before long jejune was being used not only for meager meals or hunger, but for things wanting in intellectual or emotional substance. The word most likely gained its "childish" sense when people confused it with the look-alike French word jeune, which means "young."
First Known Use: 1646See Words from the same year
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