rec·​re·​ant | \ ˈre-krē-ənt How to pronounce recreant (audio) \

Definition of recreant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : crying for mercy : cowardly
2 : unfaithful to duty or allegiance



Definition of recreant (Entry 2 of 2)

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Examples of recreant in a Sentence

Adjective the victors had only contempt for the recreant enemy soldiers who surrendered without firing a shot recreant campaign workers who walked out as soon as their candidate began dropping in the polls Noun traditionally armies have dealt harshly with recreants, with execution being a common punishment for desertion during wartime the historian reserved his greatest contempt for those recreants who opposed the witch hunt but lacked the courage to speak out against it
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First Known Use of recreant


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for recreant


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from present participle of (se) recreire to give up, yield, from Medieval Latin (se) recredere to resign oneself (to a judgment), from Latin re- + credere to believe — more at creed

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Time Traveler for recreant

Time Traveler

The first known use of recreant was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Recreant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Jul. 2020.

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