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A queen (chess)

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From Middle English queen, quene, cwen, from Old English cwēn, cwǣn (woman; wife, consort; queen, empress, royal princess), from Proto-Germanic *kwēniz (woman), from Proto-Indo-European *gʷénh₂s (woman). Cognate with Scots queen, wheen (queen), Old Saxon quān ("wife"; > Middle Low German quene (elderly woman)), Dutch kween (woman past child-bearing age), Swedish kvinna (woman), Icelandic kvon (wife), Gothic 𐌵𐌴𐌽𐍃 (qēns, wife), Norwegian dialectal kvån (wife). Related to Old English cwene (woman; female serf, quean), see quean.



queen (plural queens)

  1. A female monarch. Example: Queen Victoria.
  2. The wife or widow of a king.
    Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother
  3. (chess) The most powerful piece, able to move any number of spaces horizontally, vertically, or diagonally.
  4. (card games) A playing card with the letter "Q" and the image of a queen on it, the twelfth card in a given suit.
  5. A powerful or forceful female person.
  6. (LGBT, slang, often derogatory) An effeminate male homosexual. (Compare drag queen and street queen. See usage notes.)
    • (Can we date this quote?), Bebe Scarpi, quoted in 2007, Stephan Cohen, The Gay Liberation Youth Movement in New York (ISBN 1135905673), page 196:
      Despite one's opinion of Sylvia I can attest to the purity of her intent and dedication, and, no one will dare deny she is one gutsy queen.
  7. A reproductive female animal in a hive, such as an ant, bee, termite or wasp.
  8. An adult female cat valued for breeding. See also tom.
  9. A queen olive.
    • 1984, United States International Trade Commission, Bottled green olives from Spain (page A-24)
      Prices for the two main types of Spanish style green olives - manzanillas and queens - vary according to the size of the crop of each. In some years queens will be more expensive than manzanillas []
  10. A monarch butterfly (Danaus spp.)

Usage notesEdit

  • (LGBT): The term can be either derogatory or a self-identification. (Compare nigger.)
  • (LGBT): Some of the people who were historically (in the late 1960s and 1970s) described as "queens" or "drag queens" or "street queens" are now sometimes considered transgender. Some people, like Sylvia Rivera, self-identified as both a "transgender person" and a "street queen".


Derived termsEdit

See alsoEdit

Chess pieces in English · chess pieces, chessmen (see also: chess) (layout · text)
king queen castle, rook bishop knight pawn
Playing cards in English · playing cards (layout · text)
ace deuce, two three four five six seven
eight nine ten jack, knave queen king joker


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


See alsoEdit


queen (third-person singular simple present queens, present participle queening, simple past and past participle queened)

  1. To make a queen.
  2. (intransitive, obsolete) To act the part of a queen; to queen it.
  3. (chess) To promote a pawn, usually to a queen.
  4. (BDSM, slang, transitive, of a female) To sit on the face of (a partner) to receive oral sex.
    • 2000, "Lorelei", The Mistress Manual: The Good Girl's Guide to Female Dominance
      Try Queening him. Have him lie on his back while you sit on his face (make sure he has an airway through either his mouth or his nose).
    • 2007, Madelynne Ellis, Dark Designs
      ...not Eloise, sat queening him. He couldn't wait to tip her velvet. He wanted to come, but not here, with these three. It was time to extract himself.
    • 2012, Yolanda Celbridge, The Castle of Maldona
      She saw his pink tongue flickering on Clare's exposed nympha as she queened him, her love juices shining on his chin and throat []


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