swan

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See also: Swan

English[edit]

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Wikipedia
A swan.

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English swan, from Old English swan, from Proto-Germanic *swanaz (swan, literally the singing bird), from Proto-Indo-European *swonh₂-/*swenh₂- (to sing, make sound). Cognate with West Frisian swan, Low German Swaan, swan, Dutch zwaan, German Schwan, Norwegian svane, Swedish svan. Related also to Old English ġeswin (melody, song), Old English swinsian (to make melody), Latin sonus (sound), Russian звон (zvon, ringing), Russian звук (zvuk, sound).

Noun[edit]

swan (plural swans or swan)

  1. Any of various species of large, long-necked waterfowl, of genus Cygnus (bird family: Anatidae), most of which have white plumage.
  2. (figuratively) One whose grace etc. suggests a swan.
  3. (heraldry) This bird used as a heraldic charge, sometimes with a crown around its neck (e. g. the arms of Buckinghamshire).
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
See also[edit]

Verb[edit]

swan (third-person singular simple present swans, present participle swanning, simple past and past participle swanned)

  1. (Britain, intransitive) To travel or move about in an aimless, idle, or pretentiously casual way.
    • 2010, Lee Rourke, The Canal, Melville House Publishing (2010), →ISBN, unnumbered page:
      He swans around that stinking office in his expensive clothes that are a little too tight for comfort, he swans around that stinking office without a care in the world.
    • 2013, Tilly Bagshawe, One Summer’s Afternoon, HarperCollins (2013), →ISBN, unnumbered page:
      One of the few strokes of good luck Emma had had in recent days was the news that Tatiana Flint-Hamilton, her only real rival for top billing as 'most photographable girl' at today's event had decided to swan off to Sardinia instead, leaving the limelight entirely to Emma.
Usage notes[edit]
  • In the sense “to travel”, usually used as part of the phrase “to swan about” or “to swan around”.

Etymology 2[edit]

Probably from dialectal I s’wan, a corruption of I shall warrant; or possibly from a minced form of I swear on.

Alternative forms[edit]

Verb[edit]

swan (third-person singular simple present swans, present participle swanning, simple past and past participle swanned)

  1. (US, dialectal or colloquial) To declare (chiefly in first-person present constructions).
    • 1907 December, J. D. Archer, Foiling an eavesdropper, in Telephony, volume 14, page 345:
      "Well, I swan, man, I had a better opinion of you than that."
    • 1940, Raymond Chandler, Farewell, My Lovely, Penguin 2010, page 214:
      ‘She slammed the door so hard I figured a window'd break [] .’ ‘I swan,’ I said.

Anagrams[edit]


Middle English[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Old English swan, from Proto-Germanic *swanaz.

Alternative forms[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

swan (plural swannes)

  1. swan (A bird that is part of the genus Cygnus)
  2. The meat of a a swan.
  3. (heraldry) A swan as a heraldic symbol.
Descendants[edit]
  • English: swan
  • Scots: swan
References[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From Old English swān.

Noun[edit]

swan

  1. Alternative form of swon (pigherder)

Old English[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Proto-Germanic *swanaz, probably from Proto-Indo-European *swen- (to sound, resound). Compare Old Saxon swan (Low German Swaan), Dutch zwaan, Old High German swan (German Schwan), Old Norse svanr (Swedish svan).

Alternative forms[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

swan m

  1. swan
Declension[edit]
Synonyms[edit]
Descendants[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From Proto-Germanic *swainaz. Doublet of sweġen, a borrowing from Old Norse.

Alternative forms[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

swān m

  1. man; warrior
  2. herdsman; herder
  3. servant
  4. boy; lad
Descendants[edit]

West Frisian[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old Frisian *swan, from Proto-Germanic *swanaz, probably from Proto-Indo-European *swen- (to sound, resound).

Noun[edit]

swan c (plural swannen, diminutive swantsje)

  1. swan

Further reading[edit]

  • swan”, in Wurdboek fan de Fryske taal (in Dutch), 2011