[ sweyn ]
/ sweɪn /


a male admirer or lover.
a country lad.
a country gallant.

Origin of swain

before 1150; Middle English swein servant < Old Norse sveinn boy, servant; cognate with Old English swān

Related forms

swain·ish, adjectiveswain·ish·ness, nounun·der·swain, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for swain

British Dictionary definitions for swain


/ (sweɪn) /

noun archaic, or poetic

a male lover or admirer
a country youth

Derived Forms

swainish, adjective

Word Origin for swain

Old English swān swineherd; related to Old High German swein, Old Norse sveinn boy; see swine
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