[ fan-ee ]
/ ˈfæn i /

noun, plural fan·nies. Informal.

the buttocks.

Origin of fanny

1925–30; of obscure origin; relation, if any, to British fanny “vulva” (vulgar) is unclear

Definition for fanny (2 of 2)


or Fan·ny

[ fan-ee ]
/ ˈfæn i /


a female given name, form of Frances. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for fanny

British Dictionary definitions for fanny


/ (ˈfænɪ) /

noun plural -nies slang

taboo, British the female genitals
mainly US and Canadian the buttocks

Word Origin for fanny

C20: perhaps from Fanny, pet name from Frances


Despite the theory that this word derives from the name `Fanny', its use in British English is still considered taboo by many people, and is likely to cause offence. In the US the word refers to the buttocks. Serious misunderstanding may therefore arise when what people in Britain know as a `bumbag' is referred to in the US as a `fanny pack'
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

Word Origin and History for fanny



"buttocks," 1920, American English, from earlier British meaning "vulva" (1879), perhaps from the name of John Cleland's heroine in the scandalous novel "Fanny Hill or Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure" (1748). The fem. proper name is a diminutive of Frances. The genital sense is still the primary one outside U.S., but is not current in American English, a difference which can have consequences when U.S. TV programs and movies air in Britain.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper