See more synonyms for swoon on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object)
  1. to faint; lose consciousness.
  2. to enter a state of hysterical rapture or ecstasy: The teenagers swooned at the sight of the singing star.
  1. a faint or fainting fit; syncope.

Origin of swoon

1250–1300; (v.) Middle English swo(w)nen to faint, orig. as gerund swowening, swoghning act of swooning, ultimately continuing Old English -swōgan (in compounds) to rush, overrun, choke; (noun) Middle English, partly derivative of the v., partly extracted from in (a) swoune, on swoune, alteration of a swoune, aswoune in a swoon, as if equivalent to a a-1 + swoon (noun), but probably continuing Old English āswōgen, past participle of āswōgan to overcome (see a-3), or geswōgen (past participle) senseless, dead
Related formsswoon·ing·ly, adverbun·swoon·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for swoon

drop, collapse, weaken

Examples from the Web for swoon

Contemporary Examples of swoon

Historical Examples of swoon

  • All this Barnaby saw with his first clear consciousness after his swoon.

  • Vanished into the swoon whose blackness encompassed and hid me.


    William D. Howells

  • I was ready to swoon, not with grief and trouble, but with solid joy and peace.'


    James Anthony Froude

  • Did you drop no word during my swoon that might have led them to suspect?

    Victor's Triumph

    Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth

  • Private Smith wakened from one swoon only to fall into another.

    When the West Was Young

    Frederick R. Bechdolt

British Dictionary definitions for swoon


verb (intr)
  1. a literary word for faint
  2. to become ecstatic
  1. an instance of fainting
Also (archaic or dialect): swound
Derived Formsswooning, adjectiveswooningly, adverb

Word Origin for swoon

Old English geswōgen insensible, past participle of swōgan (unattested except in compounds) to suffocate
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 swoon

c.1300, suowne, "state of unconsciousness," probably from Old English geswogen "in a faint," past participle of a lost verb *swogan, as in Old English aswogan "to choke," of uncertain origin. Cf. Low German swogen "to sigh."


c.1200, "to become unconscious," probably from a lost Old English verb *swogan (see swoon (n.)). Related: Swooned; swooning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper