Karen

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See also: karen and kåren

English[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

Etymology 1[edit]

From Danish Karen, a vernacular form of Catherine that arose in medieval Denmark. The sense "middle-aged woman" comes from the popularity of the name among baby boomers and Gen-Xers. The derogatory usage was popularized in African-American Vernacular English via social media.[1]

Alternative forms[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. A female given name from Ancient Greek.
    • 1878 Celia Thaxter, Drift-Weed, Houghton, Osgood,1878, page 28 ("Karen"):
      Left you a lover in that far land, / O Karen sad, that you pine so long! / Would I could unravel and understand / That sorrowful, sweet Norwegian song!
    • 1918 Cecily Ullman Sidgwick, Karen, W.Collins, 1918, page 12:
      I was not called Karen after Hans Andersen's dancing girl, but after a Danish friend of my mother's who married an Englishman and was my godmother. So much for our family affairs.

Usage notes[edit]

First taken up as a given name in the US, and popular in the English-speaking world from the 1950s to the 1970s.

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

Karen (plural Karens)

  1. (slang, originally African-American Vernacular, derogatory) A middle-aged white woman exhibiting a sense of entitlement or white privilege.
    • 2020 May 26, Sarah Maslin Nir, quoting Christian Cooper, “White Woman Is Fired After Calling Police on Black Man in Central Park”, in The New York Times[2]:
      “I pull out the dog treats I carry for just for such intransigence,” he wrote. “That’s when I started video recording with my iPhone, and when her inner Karen fully emerged and took a dark turn,” he said, using the name that has become slang for an entitled white woman.
  2. (by extension, derogatory) Any person, especially female, exhibiting an exaggerated sense of entitlement.
    Being a Karen is a state of mind; a man can be one.
    • 2021 Adam Korson as Phil Orley in "Ft. Ghost Child", episode five of SurrealEstate
      The organization wasn't meeting my needs, so I became a total Karen and asked to see the manager. He wasn't available so I took my business elsewhere.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Nagesh, Ashitha (2020-07-31), “What exactly is a 'Karen' and where did the meme come from?”, in BBC News[1] (in en-GB), BBC, retrieved 2020-07-30: “Although its exact origins are uncertain, the meme became popular a few years ago as a way for people of colour, particularly black Americans, to satirise the class-based and racially charged hostility they often face.”

Etymology 2[edit]

From Parthian 𐭊𐭓𐭍𐭉(krny /Kārēn/), from Old Iranian. The Armenian name is from Armenian Կարեն (Karen), from the same Parthian name.

Alternative forms[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. (historical) One of the seven great Parthian feudal families.
  2. A transliteration of the Armenian male given name Կարեն (Karen).
Synonyms[edit]
Translations[edit]

References[edit]

Etymology 3[edit]

From Burmese ကရင် (ka.rang, wild, low-caste man), from Mon ကရေင်.

Pronunciation[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. A group of languages of Myanmar and Thailand.

Further reading[edit]

Ethnologue report on the Karen languages

Anagrams[edit]


Cebuano[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English Karen, from Danish.

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. a female given name from English [in turn from Danish, in turn from Ancient Greek]

Quotations[edit]

For quotations using this term, see Citations:Karen.


Danish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

A medieval variant of Katharina (Catherine).

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. A female given name.

Descendants[edit]

All are borrowed.

  • English: Karen
  • German: Karen
  • Icelandic: Karen
  • Norwegian: Karen

References[edit]

  • [3] Danskernes Navne, based on CPR data: 83 320 females with the given name Karen have been registered in Denmark between about 1890 (=the population alive in 1967) and January 2005, with the frequency peak in the 1910s. Accessed on 19 May 2011.

Finnish[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. Genitive singular form of Kare. (the given name)

Anagrams[edit]


German[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from Danish Karen.

Pronunciation[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. A female given name, a much less popular variant of Karin

Related terms[edit]


Icelandic[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen f

  1. A female given name

Declension[edit]

Sometimes also Karen in accusative and dative.


Luxembourgish[edit]

Noun[edit]

Karen

  1. plural of Kar (cart)

Norwegian[edit]

Proper noun[edit]

Karen

  1. A female given name of Danish origin.