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 The quaint bed and breakfasts of yesterday have been replaced by upscale hotels and inns, and the village has become a mecca for top chefs.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 Back in 2016, all of this seemed marginal, almost quaint, and the general sense of victimhood projected by many of the participants amplified this feeling. Masha Gessen, The New Yorker, "The Homophobic Activist Who Won an Audience with Two Supreme Court Justices," 8 Nov. 2019 Visit the town, as well, with its quaint shops and eateries. Brenda Yenke, cleveland, "A stitch in time pleases collectors: Yenke Peddler antiques," 7 Nov. 2019 My experiments became less meaningful; the academic battles over minute details of brain function felt quaint. Tim Requarth, Longreads, "The Final Five Percent," 22 Oct. 2019 Now, a mere two years later, that seems almost quaint. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "This week in games: Doom delayed until March, Call of Duty's 175GB install," 11 Oct. 2019 A few weeks after Ishiguro’s win in October 2017, however, all those concerns seemed quaint. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, "Who Will Win the 2019 (or the 2018!) Nobel Prize in Literature?," 9 Oct. 2019 Analysts’ efforts to work out which companies are more or less likely to default, and so which bonds are more or less valuable, seem almost quaint. The Economist, "How rock-bottom bond yields spread from Japan to the rest of the world," 14 Sep. 2019 In comparison to the targeted disinformation campaigns that have dominated headlines in recent years, social media hoaxes seem almost quaint. Paris Martineau, WIRED, "Why People Keep Falling for Viral Hoaxes," 22 Aug. 2019 Our first full day was a rainy one so my family took respite in Sturgeon Bay, where a quaint downtown shopping district has plenty of antique shops, coffee spots and bookstores. Christopher Magan, Twin Cities, "Keys to Door County: food, hikes and spectacular sunsets," 14 Sep. 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

Statistics for quaint

Last Updated

16 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for quaint

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

See more words from the same century

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

to engage in dissolute behavior

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz

  • rotelle pasta
  • Match the pasta to its meaning in English: Rotelle
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

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!