Recorded since 1656; from Ancient Greek εὐφημισμός (euphēmismós), from εὐφημίζω (euphēmízō), from εὔφημος (eúphēmos, “uttering sound of good omen, abstaining from inauspicious words”), from εὖ (eû, “well”) + φήμη (phḗmē, “a voice, a prophetic voice, rumor, talk”), from φάναι (phánai, “to speak, say”).
- (uncountable) The use of a word or phrase to replace another with one that is considered less offensive, blunt or vulgar than the word or phrase which it replaces.
- (countable) A word or phrase that is used to replace another in this way.
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