phi·​lan·​der | \fə-ˈlan-dər \
philandered; philandering\ fə-​ˈlan-​d(ə-​)riŋ \

Definition of philander 

intransitive verb

: to have casual or illicit sex with a person or with many people especially : to be sexually unfaithful to one's spouse usually used of a man … her philandering brother-in-law; and … the schoolteacher he philanders with. — Judith Crist

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Other Words from philander

philanderer \ fə-​ˈlan-​dər-​ər \ noun

Synonyms for philander


cheat, step out

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Examples of philander in a Sentence

he can't seem to stop philandering, even now that he's on his fifth marriage

Recent Examples on the Web

The narrator of this novel is a writer who has lost her best friend, a philandering teacher and writer, to suicide. Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker, "Briefly Noted," 5 Mar. 2018 But, of note in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal, Krefft concludes that Fox was never unfaithful to his wife, Eva, while his rival studio lords — Jack Warner and Louis B. Mayer — philandered infamously on their casting couches. Matt Damsker, USA TODAY, "New bio: Remembering William Fox, the flawed genius behind 20th Century Fox," 26 Dec. 2017 No word yet if exceptions will be granted for the side chicks of philandering congressmen. Anne Branigin, The Root, "Pro-Life Congressman Mysteriously OK With Abortion if His Side Chick Needs One: Report," 4 Oct. 2017 Mark’s brother, Gerry, is a philandering real-estate agent who sets up an anonymous blog to complain about the local government. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "The Best New Fiction," 4 Aug. 2017 In the video accompanying the 1998 track, the two singers battle over a philandering lover originally played by Mekhi Phifer. Erin Jensen, USA TODAY, "James Corden, Jeffrey Tambor fight over John Boyega in 'The Boy Is Mine' parody video," 10 Aug. 2017 In the 1950s, a philandering Jack L. Warner undercut his brother Harry for control of the family’s Warner Bros. studio, and the two never spoke again. Laura M. Holson, New York Times, "“This is all very Shakespearean, with the family, all the people taking over the kingdom,” said Michael Medavoy, a producer who knows Mr. Redstone. “It’s a tragedy. But my question is, is it a tragic comedy or is it a tragic drama?”," 14 May 2016 So why would anyone want to watch a series about a group of philandering, shameless, serially narcissistic people? Patricia Garcia, Vogue, "Friends from College Will Remind You Why You Stopped Calling Those People in the First Place," 14 July 2017 Even the party guests have back stories, among them the handsome, philandering doctor (Roland Lane) and his stoic wife (Marlaina Powell), who put him through medical school. Anita Gates, New York Times, "Review: ‘On Strivers Row,’ Where Snobbery Knows No Boundaries," 30 May 2017

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

1737, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for philander

from obsolete philander lover, philanderer, probably from the name Philander

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Time Traveler for philander

The first known use of philander was in 1737

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Comments on philander

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something that serves to warn or remind

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