loon

1
[loon]
See more synonyms for loon on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. any of several large, short-tailed, web-footed, fish-eating diving birds of the genus Gavia, of the Northern Hemisphere.

Origin of loon

1
First recorded in 1625–35; perhaps alteration of loom3

loon

2
[loon]
noun
  1. a crazy or simple-minded person.

Origin of loon

2
1400–50; late Middle English lowen, perhaps < Old Norse lūinn worn, tired; later influenced by loon1 and loony1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for loon

crazy, lunatic, maniac, eccentric, nut, psychopath, sociopath

Examples from the Web for loon

Contemporary Examples of loon

Historical Examples of loon

  • As if one loon—I mean as if one Chapter member in the family wasn't enough.

    Cap'n Dan's Daughter

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • Then he threw off his main-hatch and "haw-hawed" like a loon.

    Cape Cod Stories

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • Gin I could have come up in time, the loon had never risen from the ground.'

    Two Penniless Princesses

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • Knowing what she knew of her brother, Loon Dyke could never again be her home.

  • But a loon flapped up from the rushes, brushing the priest's face with its wings.


British Dictionary definitions for loon

loon

1
noun
  1. the US and Canadian name for diver (def. 3)

Word Origin for loon

C17: of Scandinavian origin; related to Old Norse lōmr

loon

2
noun
  1. informal a simple-minded or stupid person
  2. Northeast Scot dialect a lad
  3. archaic a person of low rank or occupation (esp in the phrase lord and loon)

Word Origin for loon

C15: origin obscure
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 loon
n.1

large diving bird (especially the Great Northern Diver), 1630s, from a Scandinavian source (cf. Norwegian lom, from Old Norse lomr).

n.2

"crazy person," mid-15c., lowen "rascal," of uncertain origin, perhaps related to Dutch loen "stupid person."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper