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From Middle English afere, affere, from Old French afaire, from a- + faire (to do); Latin ad- + facere to do. See fact, and confer ado.



affair (plural affairs)

  1. That which is done or is to be done; matter; concern; business of any kind, commercial, professional, or public; — often in the plural.
    a difficult affair to manage
  2. Any proceeding or action which it is wished to refer to or characterize vaguely.
    an affair of honor, i. e., a duel
    an affair of love, i. e., an intrigue.
  3. (military) An action or engagement not of sufficient magnitude to be called a battle.
  4. A material object (vaguely designated).
    He used a hook-shaped affair with a long handle to unlock the car.
    • 1907, Robert Chambers, chapter 1/2, The Younger Set[1]:
      The house was a big elaborate limestone affair, evidently new. Winter sunshine sparkled on lace-hung casement, on glass marquise, and the burnished bronze foliations of grille and door.
  5. An adulterous relationship. (from affaire de cœur.)


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