I thought fancy meant desired. Can you fancy a girl, like you fancy a sandwich? You can fancy a girl without wishing to have sex with her. Some men may argue with that, having dirty minds, but I assure you, it is possible. Dream Focus 19:19, 24 March 2009 (UTC)
What do they mean? What POS? I've heard of a goldfish fancier, but not a “[whatever] fancy.” —MichaelZ. 2010-03-26 17:17 z
Noun. A hobby, although for some it's more a way of life (lol). See here -- ALGRIFtalk 17:45, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
I don't think this is part of mainstream US English, even the sense of fancy. Of the six hits for "dog fancy" at COCA 5 were were for w:Dog Fancy (magazine), which does appear on magazine racks in the US and may be published in the US. The other is by a US-born (1942) Canadian (since 1975) student of dog behavior, w:Stanley Coren. DCDuringTALK 19:34, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
Dog fancy does seem to be how the dog-showing/dog-breeding-for-show industry and its customers seem to refer to themselves, even in the US. It might be necessary to have these terms to show their restricted use adequately. I can't quite see how a usage note at [[fancy#Noun]] would be effective in this regard. DCDuringTALK 19:43, 26 March 2010 (UTC)
Well that would be dog (1, “an animal,” n. attr.) + fancy (4, “sport or hobby,” n.), meaning “the fancy of dogs”. —MichaelZ. 2010-03-26 20:27 z
A quick look at Google using variations of "members of the fancy"+(choose an animal) seems to indicate that the term might be limited to cats, dogs, and birds (pidgeons?), which inclines me towards improving fancy and possibly placing redirects for cat and dog fancy, particularly as the phrase "members of the fancy" without indicating which fancy seems to be quite common. -- ALGRIFtalk 20:11, 27 March 2010 (UTC)
I've found citations for “tulip fancy,” “rose fancy,” “tropical fish fancy,” “goldfish fancy,” “guinea pig fancy,” “ferret fancy,” “canine fancy,” and “dachshund fancy,” without trying very hard. I'm sure there may be examples of a hundred dog and cat breeds alone, and many other nonce usages, like “insect fancy.” Why don't you add a few more typical usages to citations:fancy, to help the entry's findability? I don't think we normally create redirects for phrases including a term. —MichaelZ. 2010-03-28 20:38 z
Sorry MZ, I don't doubt you got many many hits. But did you read any of them? They are all about things like "tulip fancy dress" or "...tropical fish - Fancy guppies - ..." etc etc. None of them, not even your "insect" link, (as far as I can make out) have anything to do with the subject matter at hand. BTW, did you actually try the search "members of the fancy"+(term)? The fancy is a term that seems to refer peculiarly to the cat and dog breeding and showing fraternity, and possibly the pidgeon fanciers. So I replant the original question for consideration, please. -- ALGRIFtalk 14:30, 29 March 2010 (UTC)
That hurts. I went to the trouble of confirming instances of every one of those, in this sense. Your comment about Björk's “insect fancy” makes me suspect that you're ultra-focussed on what you have determined to be the subject (of dog and cat fancying), and ignoring usage of the term in exactly this sense of fancy meaning “a hobby” or “the membership in a hobby.”
The very first page of GB results for "tulip fancy" yields the following:
This was “a heavy blow and great discouragement” to the tulip fancy, and was regretted by all who knew the fact, because, had the collection been worthy of the owner and of the price charged for it, the duke's example would doubtless have been followed by other wealthy patrons.
It would be difficult to say with any exactitude when the tulip fancy began in Great Britain.
The late Mr. Austin, of Clapton, one of the best supporters of the Tulip fancy in England, some forty years ago, raised a few seedling-breeders, but never produced from them anything very particularly worthy of notice here; his “Mrs. Miller” is the only Tulip of his growth to which he ever gave a name, at least it is the only one that ever came under the cognizance of the fancy, and is not of very high repute.
In the palmy days of the Tulip fancy all the growers north and south gave protection to their Tulip beds.
But it is not a little amusing to hear the condemnation of the tulip fancy by persons who care nothing about them.
I think all the latter are pretty well agreed upon one thing—that the chief motto for success in the Tulip fancy is Fresh Soil, and i will add that the oftener the roots get changed from one sort of soil to another the better; not only so, but a change in locality is equally necessary and beneficial for keeping them in the fine perfect strain which only is fit for exhibition.
I can't imagine how you read “tulip fancy dress ball” but missed 6 out of 10 good hits. —MichaelZ. 2010-03-29 17:00 z
The OED has, under "the fancy", "collect. for those who ‘fancy’ a particular amusement or pursuit. a. gen., as applied to bird-, book-fanciers, etc.". It is a fairly common rightpondian term. SemperBlotto 14:43, 29 March 2010 (UTC)
And later down - "The art or practice of breeding animals so as to develop points of conventional beauty or excellence; also one of these points. Sometimes with qualifying word prefixed, as pigeon-fancy."
To MZ. Please accept my (public) apology. My only excuse is that I have very little available time, so my searches and checks can sometimes be a bit superficial. I am not grinding any axe here. I now see that we simply need to improve the entry at fancy. -- ALGRIFtalk 12:21, 30 March 2010 (UTC)
Accepted. Anyway, a fancy is typically a certain kind of fussy hobby, but the term is not restricted to them. The potential kinds of fancy are an open set, and, of course, the term could be use with humour or irony: “Get your latest issue of Firearm Fancy! You don’t have to be a militia man to tote a gun in Gaza; teachers have them, too!”
The best way to illustrate typical usage is with good citations. —MichaelZ. 2010-03-30 17:26 z
I have deleted the remark on the "feel like" synonym that it can only be used with a verb. A common counterexample would be a sentence like "I feel like steak tonight." —This comment was unsigned.
Yes that is common, at least in the US. I think some right-ponders find that common US expression funny, even wrong, because they read it with another sense of "feel" in mind. DCDuringTALK 18:19, 20 May 2011 (UTC)