feminine

feminine mid-14c., "of the female sex," from O.Fr. femenin (12c.) "feminine, female; with feminine qualities, effeminate," from L. femininus "feminine" (in the grammatical sense at first), from femina "woman, female," lit. "she who suckles," from root of felare "to suck, suckle" (see FECUND (Cf. fecund)). Sense of "woman-like, proper to or characteristic of women" is recorded from mid-15c. The interplay of meanings now represented in female, feminine, and effeminate, and the attempt to make them clear and separate, has led to many coinages: feminitude (1878); feminile “feminine” (1640s); feminility “womanliness” (1838); femality (17c., “effeminacy;” 1754 “female nature”). Also feminality (1640s, “quality or state of being female”), from rare adj. feminal (late 14c.), from O.Fr. feminal. And femineity “quality or state of being feminine,” from L. femineus “of a woman, pertaining to a woman.”

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Feminine — Fem i*nine, a. [L. femininus, fr. femina woman; prob. akin to L. fetus, or to Gr. qh^sqai to suck, qh^sai to suckle, Skr. dh[=a] to suck; cf. AS. f[=ae]mme woman, maid: cf. F. f[ e]minin. See {Fetus}.] 1. Of or pertaining to a woman, or to women; …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • feminine — ► ADJECTIVE 1) having qualities traditionally associated with women, especially delicacy and prettiness. 2) female. 3) Grammar referring to a gender of nouns and adjectives, conventionally regarded as female. ► NOUN (the feminine) ▪ the female… …   English terms dictionary

  • feminine — [fem′ə nin] adj. [ME < OFr < L femininus < femina, woman] 1. female; of women or girls 2. having qualities regarded as characteristic of women and girls, as gentleness, weakness, delicacy, or modesty 3. suitable to or characteristic of a …   English World dictionary

  • Feminine — Fem i*nine, n. 1. A woman. [Obs. or Colloq.] [1913 Webster] They guide the feminines toward the palace. Hakluyt. [1913 Webster] 2. (Gram.) Any one of those words which are the appellations of females, or which have the terminations usually found… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • feminine — *female, womanly, womanish, ladylike, womanlike, effeminate Antonyms: masculine Contrasted words: *male, manly, mannish, virile, manlike, manful …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • féminine — ● féminin, féminine adjectif (latin femininus, de femina, femme) Qui est propre à la femme : Le charme féminin. Se dit d un groupe composé de femmes : Équipe féminine. Qui a rapport aux femmes : Vêtements féminins. Qui est destiné, réservé aux… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • feminine — 01. Her father thought that women who were strong and confident were not really [feminine]. 02. The traditional [feminine] role is that of a housewife and mother. 03. Our apartment has a very [feminine] look with its soft colors, and pictures of… …   Grammatical examples in English

  • feminine — I. adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo French feminin, from Latin femininus, from femina woman; akin to Old English delu nipple, Latin filius son, felix, fetus, & fecundus fruitful, felare to suck, Greek thēlē nipple Date: 14th… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • feminine — [[t]fe̱mɪnɪn[/t]] 1) ADJ: usu ADJ n Feminine qualities and things relate to or are considered typical of women, in contrast to men. ...male leaders worrying about their women abandoning traditional feminine roles. ...a manufactured ideal of… …   English dictionary

  • Féminine — Féminité La féminité est l’ensemble des caractères morphologiques psychologiques et comportementaux propres aux femmes. Ils sont biologiquement liés au sexe et fortement influencés, voire conditionnés par l’environnement socioculturel. Ils sont… …   Wikipédia en Français

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