SYNONYMS | EXAMPLES | WORD ORIGIN noun ( used with a plural verb) the impure spirit produced in the first and last stages of the distillation of whiskey. Origin of faints 1735–45;
noun use (in plural) of
adjective, faint·er, faint·est. lacking brightness, vividness, clearness, loudness, strength, etc.: a faint light; a faint color; a faint sound. feeble or slight: faint resistance; faint praise; a faint resemblance. feeling weak, dizzy, or exhausted; about to lose consciousness: faint with hunger. lacking courage; cowardly; timorous: Faint heart never won fair maid. . Law unfounded: a faint action. verb (used without object) to lose consciousness temporarily. to lose brightness. . Archaic to grow weak; lose spirit or courage. noun a temporary loss of consciousness resulting from a decreased flow of blood to the brain; a swoon: to fall into a faint. Origin of faint 1250–1300; Middle English
Anglo-French, Old French,
past participle of
feign Related forms faint·er, noun faint·ing·ly, adverb faint·ish, adjective faint·ish·ness, noun faint·ly, adverb faint·ness, noun o·ver·faint, adjective o·ver·faint·ly, adverb o·ver·faint·ness, noun un·faint·ing, adjective un·faint·ly, adverb Synonyms for faint 1
. pass out, black out.
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Related Words for faints dim
succumb Examples from the Web for faints Contemporary Examples of faints Historical Examples of faints
When the emotion is in full flood, the animal fights, flees, or
faints or falls on the ground, he is raised up and urged to move on.
When he succeeds in doing this she
faints away, but has to submit to her doom.
If a man's pain exceeds a certain amount, he
faints, and so gets relief.
My dear Hiram,” cried Mrs. Otis, “what can we do with a woman who
faints? British Dictionary definitions for faints adjective lacking clarity, brightness, volume, etc a faint noise lacking conviction or force; weak faint praise feeling dizzy or weak as if about to lose consciousness without boldness or courage; timid (esp in the combination faint-hearted) not the faintest, not the faintest idea or not the faintest notion no idea whatsoever I haven't the faintest verb (intr) to lose consciousness, esp momentarily, as through weakness archaic, or poetic to fail or become weak, esp in hope or courage noun a sudden spontaneous loss of consciousness, usually momentary, caused by an insufficient supply of blood to the brain Technical name: syncope Derived Forms fainter, noun faintingly, adverb faintish, adjective faintishness, noun faintly, adverb faintness, noun Word Origin for faint
C13: from Old French, from
faindre to be idle
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for faints adj.
c.1300, "wanting in courage," now mostly in
faint-hearted (mid-15c.), from Old French feint "soft, weak, sluggish," past participle of feindre "hesitate, falter, be indolent, show weakness, avoid one's duty by pretending" (see feign). Sense of "weak, feeble" is early 14c. Meaning "producing a feeble impression upon the senses" is from 1650s. v.
"grow weak" (c.1300); "lose heart" (mid-14c.); see
faint (adj.). Sense of "swoon" is c.1400. Related: Fainted; fainting.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
n. An abrupt, usually brief loss of consciousness; an attack of syncope. adj. Extremely weak; threatened with syncope.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Idioms and Phrases with faints
see damn with faint praise.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.