[pen-chuh nt; French pahn-shahn]


a strong inclination, taste, or liking for something: a penchant for outdoor sports.

Nearby words

  1. penang,
  2. penannular,
  3. penates,
  4. pence,
  5. pencel,
  6. penchi,
  7. penché,
  8. pencil,
  9. pencil beam,
  10. pencil box

Origin of penchant

1665–75; < French, noun use of present participle of pencher to incline, lean < Vulgar Latin *pendicāre, derivative of Latin pendēre to hang Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for penchant

British Dictionary definitions for penchant



a strong inclination or liking; bent or taste

Word Origin for penchant

C17: from French, from pencher to incline, from Latin pendēre to be suspended

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 penchant



1670s, from French penchant, noun use of present participle of Old French pencher "to incline," from Vulgar Latin *pendicare, a frequentative formed from Latin pendere "to hang" (see pendant (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with penchant


see have a penchant for.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.