Origin of freak

1
1555–65; 1965–70 for def 6; perhaps akin to Old English frīcian to dance
Can be confusedfreak phreak

Synonyms for freak

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


British Dictionary definitions for freaker

freak

1

noun

a person, animal, or plant that is abnormal or deformed; monstrosity
  1. an object, event, etc, that is abnormal or extremely unusual
  2. (as modifier)a freak storm
a personal whim or caprice
informal a person who acts or dresses in a markedly unconventional or strange way
informal a person who is obsessed with something specifieda jazz freak

verb

Word Origin for freak

C16: of obscure origin

freak

2

noun

a fleck or streak of colour

verb

(tr) to streak with colour; variegate

Word Origin for freak

C17: from earlier freaked, probably coined by Milton, based on streak 1 + obsolete freckt freckled; see freckle
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 freaker

freak

n.

1560s, "sudden turn of mind," of unknown origin, perhaps related to Old English frician "to dance" (not recorded in Middle English, but the word may have survived in dialect) [OED, Barnhart], or perhaps from Middle English frek "bold, quickly," from Old English frec "greedy, gluttonous" (cf. German frech "bold, impudent").

Sense of "capricious notion" (1560s) and "unusual thing, fancy" (1784) preceded that of "strange or abnormal individual" (first in freak of nature, 1847; cf. Latin lusus naturæ, used in English from 1660s). The sense in health freak, ecology freak, etc. is attested from 1908 (originally Kodak freak, a camera buff). Freak show attested from 1887.

freak

v.

"change, distort," 1911, from freak (n.). Earlier, "to streak or fleck randomly" (1630s). Related: Freaked; freaking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper