penchant

noun
pen·​chant | \ ˈpen-chənt How to pronounce penchant (audio) , especially British ˈpäⁿ-ˌshäⁿ\

Definition of penchant

: a strong and continued inclination broadly : liking

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Choose the Right Synonym for penchant

leaning, propensity, proclivity, penchant mean a strong instinct or liking for something. leaning suggests a liking or attraction not strong enough to be decisive or uncontrollable. a student with artistic leanings propensity implies a deeply ingrained and usually irresistible inclination. a propensity to offer advice proclivity suggests a strong natural proneness usually to something objectionable or evil. a proclivity for violence penchant implies a strongly marked taste in the person or an irresistible attraction in the object. a penchant for taking risks

What is the Difference Between penchant, leaning, propensity, And proclivity?

Like its synonyms "leaning," "propensity," and "proclivity," "penchant" implies a strong instinct or liking for something. But these four words, while similar, are also distinguished by subtle differences. "Leaning" usually suggests a liking or attraction not strong enough to be decisive or uncontrollable ("a student with artistic leanings"), whereas "propensity" tends to imply a deeply ingrained and usually irresistible inclination ("a propensity to offer advice"). "Proclivity" frequently suggests a strong, natural proneness to something objectionable or evil ("a proclivity for violence"). "Penchant," a descendant of Latin pendere ("to weigh"), typically implies a strongly marked taste in the person or an irresistible attraction in the object ("a penchant for taking risks").

Examples of penchant in a Sentence

Aside from the Catholic penchant for fish on Fridays, there is also the tradition of eating red beans and rice on Monday … — Tom Piazza, Why New Orleans Matters, 2005 Whether manifested in feminine decor or in an approach to teaching that assumes a female penchant for cooperative, or "connected," learning, stereotypical notions of femininity often infect institutions for women and girls. — Wendy Kaminer, Atlantic, April 1998 From both her father and mother she had inherited a penchant for art, literature, philosophy, and music. Already at eighteen she was dreaming of painting, singing, writing poetry, writing books, acting—anything and everything. — Theodore Dreiser, The Titan, 1914 a penchant for sitting by the window and staring moodily off into space
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Recent Examples on the Web

In the present, though, his penchant for alienating others with racist behavior and statements threatens his legacy. Baltimore Sun Staff, baltimoresun.com, "Bigmouth strikes again: Morrissey’s racist rhetoric inspires boycott ahead of Merriweather Post Pavilion show," 4 Sep. 2019 This is a not-so-subtle commentary on reality TV and its penchant for escalating drama and extreme intrusiveness, but also cancel culture and social media mob justice, which takes everything out of context and judges based on sparse information. Hanna Kozlowska, Quartzy, "A new thriller novel offers up twisted scenarios of the tech revolution gone wrong," 28 Aug. 2019 Abrams is well known for his penchant for twists: His early TV shows, including Alias, Lost and even Felicity were filled with fake-outs and surprises. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker," 26 Aug. 2019 This is no globe-trotting mystery thriller, and Bernadette Fox (played by Cate Blanchett) would not make for a particularly elusive super-thief, despite her penchant for big sunglasses. David Sims, The Atlantic, "Richard Linklater’s Where’d You Go, Bernadette Is a Gripping Mess," 16 Aug. 2019 Rock the black and purple set to add some edge to your wardrobe, or sport the turquoise and yellow set to exude your penchant for fun. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "Set Your Alarm: Volume 3 of Fall Risk Drops This Saturday," 13 Aug. 2019 But his presidency has come to be defined by policies that are aligned with aspects of the white nationalist agenda and his penchant for fanning racial animus. Greg Miller, Anchorage Daily News, "Rise of far-right violence leads some to call for realignment of national security priorities," 6 Aug. 2019 In the 1920s, his penchant for calculus combined with patient observations of helmsmen steering US battleships allowed Minorisky to figure out the mathematical theory behind proportional-integral-derivative control, or PID. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "Scientists Can Finally Build Feedback Circuits in Cells," 26 July 2019 Closely held Digital First is known for its contentious history with the newspaper industry in part because of its penchant for slashing costs. Cara Lombardo, WSJ, "Hedge-Fund-Backed Media Group Makes Bid for Gannett," 14 Jan. 2019

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

1672, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for penchant

French, from present participle of pencher to incline, from Vulgar Latin *pendicare, from Latin pendere to weigh

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Dictionary Entries near penchant

Pence

pencel

penceless

penchant

penché

pencil

pencil and pearl

Statistics for penchant

Last Updated

8 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for penchant

The first known use of penchant was in 1672

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More Definitions for penchant

penchant

noun

English Language Learners Definition of penchant

: a strong liking for something or a strong tendency to behave in a certain way

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More from Merriam-Webster on penchant

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with penchant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for penchant

Spanish Central: Translation of penchant

Nglish: Translation of penchant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of penchant for Arabic Speakers

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