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fraidy-cat

[frey-dee-kat]
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noun Informal.
  1. a timid, easily frightened person: often used by children.
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Origin of fraidy-cat

1905–10; fraid (aphetic form of afraid) + -y1
Also called scaredy-cat.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Word Origin and History for fraidy-cat

n.

"coward," by 1871, American English slang, from 'fraid, childish or dialectal (African, West Indies) pronunciation of afraid (by 1816), + cat.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper