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[pik-wik-ee-uh n] /pɪkˈwɪk i ən/
of, relating to, or characteristic of Mr. Pickwick, central character of The Pickwick Papers.
(of the use or interpretation of an expression) intentionally or unintentionally odd or unusual.
(of words or ideas) meant or understood in a sense different from the apparent or usual one.
Origin of Pickwickian
1830-40; Pickwick + -ian
Related forms
Pickwickianly, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Pickwickian
Historical Examples
  • The general tone of both is the same and in the modern work there is a general Pickwickian flavour.

    Bardell v. Pickwick Percy Fitzgerald
  • “Flying the garter” is another of the Pickwickian boy games.

  • It is only within narrow limits, and then only in a Pickwickian sense, that honesty is the best policy.

  • But as he damned me only officially and in confidence, I took it in the Pickwickian sense.

    Memoirs Charles Godfrey Leland
  • Sir Walter, with real Pickwickian sagacity, points to a true explanation which may be applied in other cases.

    Pickwickian Studies Percy Fitzgerald
  • Nay,” said the eloquent Pickwickian, “I know it but too well.

  • You agree to it in a certain sentimental Pickwickian sense, but you do not hold it as a living truth.

    A New Atmosphere Gail Hamilton
  • If he was a criminal he was so at most only in a Pickwickian sense.

    By Advice of Counsel Arthur Train
  • Let that honourable Pickwickian who cried "No" so loudly come forward and deny it, if he could.

    The Pickwick Papers Charles Dickens
  • He stood on the brink much as Winkle, of Pickwickian memory, trembled in Weller's grasp.

British Dictionary definitions for Pickwickian


of, relating to, or resembling Mr Pickwick in Charles Dickens' The Pickwick Papers, esp in being naive or benevolent
(of the use or meaning of a word, etc) odd or unusual
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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