quaint

adjective
\ ˈkwānt How to pronounce quaint (audio) \

Definition of quaint

1a : pleasingly or strikingly old-fashioned or unfamiliar a quaint phrase
b : unusual or different in character or appearance : odd
2a : marked by skillful design quaint with many a device in India ink— Herman Melville
b : marked by beauty or elegance
3 obsolete : expert, skilled

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from quaint

quaintly adverb
quaintness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for quaint

strange, singular, unique, peculiar, eccentric, erratic, odd, quaint, outlandish mean departing from what is ordinary, usual, or to be expected. strange stresses unfamiliarity and may apply to the foreign, the unnatural, the unaccountable. a journey filled with strange sights singular suggests individuality or puzzling strangeness. a singular feeling of impending disaster unique implies singularity and the fact of being without a known parallel. a career unique in the annals of science peculiar implies a marked distinctiveness. the peculiar status of America's first lady eccentric suggests a wide divergence from the usual or normal especially in behavior. the eccentric eating habits of preschoolers erratic stresses a capricious and unpredictable wandering or deviating. a friend's suddenly erratic behavior odd applies to a departure from the regular or expected. an odd sense of humor quaint suggests an old-fashioned but pleasant oddness. a quaint fishing village outlandish applies to what is uncouth, bizarre, or barbaric. outlandish fashions of the time

Examples of quaint in a Sentence

A lot can change in 25 years, and Yountville has gone from an also-ran on the Napa food-and-wine tourism scene to the focus of activity. The quaint bed and breakfasts of yesterday have been replaced by upscale hotels and inns, and the village has become a mecca for top chefs. — Tim Fish, Wine Spectator, 15 June 2008 Therefore, when the federal Constitutional Convention decided in 1787 that U.S. senators would be appointed by state legislatures rather than elected by the people at large, the drafters were actually placing the choice of U.S. senators in the control of state leaders who had met their states' highest qualifications for property and religion. Today, these property and religious qualifications are likely to strike us as quaint historical oddities. — Richard N. Rosenfeld, Harper's, May 2004 Five minutes by ferry from the bustling concrete depths of Wall Street sits what could be a quaint New England town: stately, collegiate buildings framed by tree-lined walkways where the wind rustles through aging oak trees. — Andrea Elliott, New York Times, 25 July 2003 The fishing village was very quaint. The writer talks about the quaint customs of the natives.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Toile is a classic fabric and pattern that usually depicts quiet, peaceful scenes of drowsy shepherds, sheep, quaint villages, and lovers lounging under trees. Ann Lien, House Beautiful, "This Toile Pattern Features Aliens, Robots, and More," 12 Dec. 2019 Placencia, Belize Situated on the beautiful Maya Beach, The Placencia Resort is just a short journey away from the quaint village of Placencia, the Belize Barrier Reef and the Maya Mountains. Kimberly Wilson, Essence, "The Luxe Belize Getaway You And Your Girls Need Today," 5 Nov. 2019 The way light dances inside the lanterns is meant to mimic nights in quaint ski villages, where shining lights reflect beautifully on the snow. al, "This local potter sends her work all over the world," 30 Oct. 2019 Hill stations, a quaint term for the holiday destinations in or near the mountains, are a colonial legacy that India is quite happy to retain. Payal Dhar, Washington Post, "Keep your cool in India by visiting one of the country’s hill stations," 5 July 2019 From state fairs to the London Eye, Ferris wheels can range from quaint to magnificent. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Paul Daugherty's Morning Line: Are Cincinnati Reds .500 team now? Ask me at All-Star break," 28 June 2018 Yet however quaint terms like women’s liberation, black liberation, and gay liberation sound now, Scully used each to characterize the three most far reaching, transformative, and gratifying movements of his lifetime. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "Remembering Vincent Scully," 10 Jan. 2018 About 90 miles northeast of Lisbon, just east of the pilgrimage site of Fátima, is lushly green Tomar – a quaint town of about 20,000 residents, set under a historic fortress. Rick Steves, USA TODAY, "Tomar: The quiet, historic Portuguese town the tourists haven't discovered yet," 24 Nov. 2019 The quaint Texas town was recently named the No. 1 best city to live in Texas in a new study from MoneyInc.com. Rebecca Hennes, Houston Chronicle, "Seabrook was ranked the No. 1 best place to live in Texas: Here's why," 20 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'quaint.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of quaint

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for quaint

Middle English queinte, cointe, from Anglo-French, clever, expert, from Latin cognitus, past participle of cognoscere to know — more at cognition

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about quaint

Time Traveler for quaint

Time Traveler

The first known use of quaint was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for quaint

Last Updated

12 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Quaint.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quaint. Accessed 20 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for quaint

quaint

adjective
How to pronounce quaint (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of quaint

: having an old-fashioned or unusual quality or appearance that is usually attractive or appealing

quaint

adjective
\ ˈkwānt How to pronounce quaint (audio) \
quainter; quaintest

Kids Definition of quaint

: pleasingly old-fashioned or unfamiliar quaint customs

Other Words from quaint

quaintly adverb
quaintness noun

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on quaint

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for quaint

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with quaint

Spanish Central: Translation of quaint

Nglish: Translation of quaint for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of quaint for Arabic Speakers

Comments on quaint

What made you want to look up quaint? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

not to be intimidated or subdued

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Eponym Quiz

  • rubens painting
  • Which is the best synonym of bowdlerize?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!