archness

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From arch ‎(principal; primary; mischievous, adj) +‎ -ness.

Noun[edit]

archness ‎(countable and uncountable, plural archnesses)

  1. The state of being arch.
    • 1811, Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility, chapter 18
      Marianne was surprised and confused, yet she could not help smiling at the quiet archness of his manner
    • 2004, Alan Hollinghurst, The Line of Beauty, Bloomsbury, 2005, Chapter 3,
      There was something artless in Toby's delivery; he was working in the family tradition of teasing, but he was too relenting and couldn't yet match Gerald's heavy archness.