verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
Origin of charm1
Synonyms for charm
Examples from the Web for charmer
Contemporary Examples of charmer
Hawke, ever the charmer, kicks things off with a compliment: I really like you guys.Coffee Talk with Ethan Hawke: On ‘Boyhood,’ Jennifer Lawrence, and Bill Clinton’s Urinal Exchange
December 27, 2014
Ever the charmer, Hice just thinks they should get the permission of their husbands before they do much of anything.Meet the Man Running for Congress on an Anti-Muslim Platform
July 24, 2014
The Broad Street Inn, a six-room Victorian charmer, waits at the end of the route.The U.S. Road Trips You Should Really Take
April 26, 2014
Jones, ever the charmer, proceeds to slink behind the desk and begin fake-hammering away at the keyboard.Felicity Jones Is Bound for Stardom
December 29, 2013
Biden may be pugnacious, but one-on-one he can be quite the charmer.Joe Biden: Actually a Pretty Good Dealmaker
December 31, 2012
Historical Examples of charmer
I will tell thee—I was in danger of losing my charmer for ever!
This is Wednesday; the day that I was to have lost my charmer for ever to the hideous Solmes!
My charmer has written to her sister for her clothes, for some gold, and for some of her books.
I was happy with my charmer, who told me again and again that with me she lived in bliss.
You shall not go away, you shall stay here and court your charmer.
Word Origin for charm
Word Origin for charm
c.1300, "to recite or cast a magic spell," from Old French charmer (13c.) "to enchant, to fill (someone) with desire (for something); to protect, cure, treat; to maltreat, harm," from Late Latin carminare, from Latin carmen (see charm (n.)). In Old French used alike of magical and non-magical activity. In English, "to win over by treating pleasingly, delight" from mid-15c. Related: Charmed; charming. Charmed (short for I am charmed) as a conventional reply to a greeting or meeting is attested by 1825.
c.1300, "incantation, magic charm," from Old French charme (12c.) "magic charm, magic, spell; incantation, song, lamentation," from Latin carmen "song, verse, enchantment, religious formula," from canere "to sing" (see chant (v.)), with dissimilation of -n- to -r- before -m- in intermediate form *canmen (for a similar evolution, see Latin germen "germ," from *genmen). The notion is of chanting or reciting verses of magical power.
A yet stronger power than that of herb or stone lies in the spoken word, and all nations use it both for blessing and cursing. But these, to be effective, must be choice, well knit, rhythmic words (verba concepta), must have lilt and tune; hence all that is strong in the speech wielded by priest, physician, magician, is allied to the forms of poetry. [Jacob Grimm, "Teutonic Mythology" (transl. Stallybrass), 1883]
Sense of "pleasing quality" evolved 17c. Meaning "small trinket fastened to a watch-chain, etc." first recorded 1865. Quantum physics sense is from 1964. To work like a charm (figuratively) is recorded by 1824.
In addition to the idioms beginning with charm
- charmed life
- charm the pants off
- (charm the) pants off
- work like a charm