adjective, brown·er, brown·est.
verb (used with or without object)
Origin of brown
Related Words for browned offenraged, frenzied, raging, vehement, livid, violent, frantic, desperate, incensed, fierce, frenetic, bent, boiling, crazed, demented, infuriated, insane, irate, irrational, maniac
Word Origin for brown
Old English brun "dark, dusky," developing a definite color sense only 13c., from Proto-Germanic *brunaz (cf. Old Norse brunn, Danish brun, Old Frisian and Old High German brun, Dutch bruin, German braun), from PIE *bher- (3) "shining, brown" (cf. Lithuanian beras "brown"), related to *bheros "dark animal" (cf. beaver, bear (n.), and Greek phrynos "toad," literally "the brown animal").
The Old English word also had a sense of "brightness, shining," preserved only in burnish. The Germanic word was adopted into Romanic (e.g. Middle Latin brunus, Italian and Spanish bruno, French brun). Brown Bess, slang name for old British Army flintlock musket, first recorded 1785.
c.1300, "to become brown," from brown (adj.). From 1560s as "to make brown." Related: Browned; browning.
"brown color," c.1600, from brown (adj.).
Very angry, as in When she locked me out I was really browned off. This expression originated as Royal Air Force slang for “disgusted” and “depressed” in the late 1930s and had crossed the Atlantic by World War II. It gradually came to be used more widely as a slangy synonym for “infuriated.” One theory for its origin, mentioned by Eric Partridge in his slang dictionary, is that it alludes to brass buttons on a uniform turning brown from lack of polishing. Partridge noted, however, that the “predominant Army opinion” was that the word had the same literal meaning as buggered.
In addition to the idioms beginning with brown
- brown bagger
- browned off
- brownie points
- brown nose
- brown study, in a
- do up (brown)