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Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Middle English, a contraction of fantasy, from Old French fantasie, from Medieval Latin fantasia, from Late Latin phantasia (an idea, notion, fancy, phantasm), from Ancient Greek φαντασία (phantasía), from φαντάζω (phantázō, to render visible),[1] from φαντός (phantós, visible), from φαίνω (phaínō, to make visible); from the same root as φῶς (phôs, light).

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

fancy (plural fancies)

  1. The imagination.
    • 1674, John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book 5, lines 100-103,[1]
      [] But know that in the soul
      Are many lesser faculties, that serve
      Reason as chief; among these Fancy next
      Her office holds []
    • 1861, Thomas Wentworth Higginson, “A New Counterblast” in Atlantic Monthly, December 1861, p. 700,[2]
      Rustic females who habitually chew even pitch or spruce-gum are rendered thereby so repulsive that the fancy refuses to pursue the horror farther and imagine it tobacco []
  2. An image or representation of anything formed in the mind; conception; thought; idea.
    • c. 1605, William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act III, Scene 2,[3]
      How now, my lord! why do you keep alone,
      Of sorriest fancies your companions making,
      Using those thoughts which should indeed have died
      With them they think on?
  3. An opinion or notion formed without much reflection; an impression.
    • 1650, John Bulwer, Anthropometamorphosis: Man Transform’d, 2nd edition, London, 1653, Epistle Dedicatory, pp. 2-3,[4]
      When you have well viewed the Scenes and Devillish shapes of this Practicall Metamorphosis, and scan’d them in your serious thoughts, you will wonder at their audacious phant’sies, who seeme to hold Specificall deformities, or that any part can seeme unhandsome in their Eyes, which hath appeared good and beautifull unto their Maker []
    • 1693, John Locke, Some Thoughts Concerning Education, 13th edition, London, 1764, §148, p. 222, [5]
      I have always had a Fancy, that Learning might be made a Play and Recreation to Children []
  4. A whim.
    I had a fancy to learn to play the flute.
  5. Love or amorous attachment.
    He took a fancy to her.
  6. The object of inclination or liking.
  7. Any sport or hobby pursued by a group.
    Trainspotting is the fancy of a special lot.
    the cat fancy
  8. The enthusiasts of such a pursuit.
    He fell out of favor with the boxing fancy after the incident.
    • 1830, Thomas De Quincey, “Review of Life of Richard Bentley, D.D. by J.H. Monk, D.D.” in Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 28, No. 171, September 1830, p. 446, footnote,[7]
      [] at a great book sale in London, which had congregated all the Fancy, on a copy occurring, not one of the company but ourself knew what the mystical title-page meant.
  9. A diamond with a distinctive colour.
  10. That which pleases or entertains the taste or caprice without much use or value.
  11. (obsolete) A sort of love song or light impromptu ballad.
    • c. 1596–1599, William Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part 2, Act III, Scene 2,[9]
      [He] sung those tunes to the overscutch’d huswifes that he heard the carmen whistle, and sware they were his fancies or his good-nights.
  12. In the game of jacks, a style of play involving additional actions (contrasted with plainsies).
    • 1970, Marta Weigle, Follow my fancy: the book of jacks and jack games (page 22)
      When you have mastered plainsies, the regular jack game, and have learned all the rules, you will be ready to use this part of the book. A fancy is a variation of plainsies which usually requires more skill than plainsies does.
    • 2002, Elizabeth Dana Jaffe, Sherry L. Field, Linda D. Labbo, Jacks (page 26)
      When you get good at jacks, try adding a fancy. A fancy is an extra round at the end of a game. It makes the game a little harder. Jack Be Nimble, Around the World, or Black Widow are some fancies.

SynonymsEdit

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

AdjectiveEdit

fancy (comparative fancier, superlative fanciest)

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  1. Decorative.
    This is a fancy shawl.
  2. Of a superior grade.
    This box contains bottles of the fancy grade of jelly.
  3. Executed with skill.
    He initiated the game winning play with a fancy, deked saucer pass to the winger.
  4. (colloquial) Unnecessarily complicated.
    I'm not keen on him and his fancy ideas.
  5. (obsolete) Extravagant; above real value.
    • Macaulay
      This anxiety never degenerated into a monomania, like that which led his [Frederick the Great's] father to pay fancy prices for giants.

SynonymsEdit

AntonymsEdit

TranslationsEdit

AdverbEdit

fancy (not comparable)

  1. (nonstandard) In a fancy manner; fancily.
    • 1970, Troy Conway, The Cunning Linguist, London: Flamingo Books, page 131:
      I igonored it, hurdling her navel, riding her torso and taking both her breasts in my hands and mashing them none too fancy.

VerbEdit

fancy (third-person singular simple present fancies, present participle fancying, simple past and past participle fancied)

  1. (formal) To appreciate without jealousy or greed.
    I fancy your new car, but I like my old one just fine.
  2. (Britain) would like
    I fancy a burger tonight for dinner
    Do you fancy going to town this weekend?
  3. (Britain, informal) To be sexually attracted to.
    I fancy that girl over there.
  4. (dated) To imagine, suppose.
    I fancy you'll want something to drink after your long journey.
    Fancy meeting you here!
    Fancy that! I saw Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy kissing in the garden.
    • John Locke
      If our search has reached no farther than simile and metaphor, we rather fancy than know.
    • Thackeray
      He fancied he was welcome, because those around him were his kinsmen.
    • 1895, H. G. Wells, The Time Machine Chapter X
      I fancied at first the stuff was paraffin wax, and smashed the jar accordingly. But the odor of camphor was unmistakable.
  5. To form a conception of; to portray in the mind; to imagine.
    • Dryden
      he whom I fancy, but can ne'er express
  6. To have a fancy for; to like; to be pleased with, particularly on account of external appearance or manners.
    • Shakespeare
      We fancy not the cardinal.

SynonymsEdit

  • (be sexually attracted to): like (US)
  • (would like to): feel like

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ φαντασία in Liddell & Scott (1940) A Greek–English Lexicon, Oxford: Clarendon Press

Further readingEdit


Norwegian BokmålEdit

EtymologyEdit

Borrowed from English fancy.

AdjectiveEdit

fancy (indeclinable)

  1. fancy

ReferencesEdit


Norwegian NynorskEdit

EtymologyEdit

Borrowed from English fancy.

AdjectiveEdit

fancy (indeclinable)

  1. fancy

ReferencesEdit