womanly

womanly
womanliness, womanness, n.
/woom"euhn lee/, adj.
1. like or befitting a woman; feminine; not masculine or girlish.
adv.
2. in the manner of, or befitting, a woman.
[1250-1300; ME wommanli(che). See WOMAN, -LY]
Syn. 2. WOMANLY, WOMANLIKE, WOMANISH mean having the traits or qualities that a culture regards as especially characteristic of or ideally appropriate to adult women. WOMANLY is usually a term of approval, suggesting the display of traits admired by the society, such as self-possession, modesty, motherliness, and calm competence: a womanly consideration for others; with womanly skill and efficiency. WOMANLIKE may be a neutral synonym for WOMANLY, or it may suggest mild disapproval: a womanlike dignity; womanlike tears and recriminations.
WOMANISH is usually disparaging; applied to women it suggests traits not generally socially approved: a womanish petulance; womanish disregard for the rules. Applied to men it suggests traits culturally deemed inappropriate for men and (in what is now often regarded as a sexist notion) to be found in women: a womanish shrillness in his speech; a womanish way of stamping his foot in anger. See also female.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Synonyms:
(in a good sense),


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Womanly — Wom an*ly, a. Becoming a woman; feminine; as, womanly behavior. Arbuthnot. [1913 Webster] A blushing, womanly discovering grace. Donne. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • womanly — womanly, womanish Womanly is a complimentary word applied to women and meaning ‘having the good qualities of women’, whereas womanish is applied to men and is usually derogatory in the sense ‘effeminate, unmanly’. See also female, feminine …   Modern English usage

  • womanly — [woom′ənlē] adj. 1. like a woman; womanish 2. characteristic of or fit for a woman; womanlike adv. Archaic in a womanly manner SYN. FEMALE womanliness n …   English World dictionary

  • Womanly — Wom an*ly, adv. In the manner of a woman; with the grace, tenderness, or affection of a woman. Gascoigne. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • womanly — womanlike, ladylike, womanish, feminine, *female, effeminate Analogous words: *mature, matured, grown up, adult Antonyms: unwomanly, manly Contrasted words: mannish (see MALE): *youthful, juvenile, virgin, virginal, maiden …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • womanly — [adj] feminine female, girlish, ladylike, maidenly, matronly, motherly, womanish; concepts 371,372,408,648 …   New thesaurus

  • womanly — wom•an•ly [[t]ˈwʊm ən li[/t]] adj. 1) having qualities traditionally ascribed to women; feminine; not masculine or girlish 2) in the manner of, or befitting, a woman • Etymology: 1250–1300 wom′an•li•ness, wom′an•ness, n. syn: womanly, womanlike,… …   From formal English to slang

  • womanly — [[t]w ʊmənli[/t]] ADJ GRADED (approval) People describe a woman s behaviour, character, or appearance as womanly when they like it because they think it is typical of, or suitable for, a woman rather than a man or girl. She had a classical,… …   English dictionary

  • womanly — adjective 1) womanly virtues Syn: feminine, female; archaic feminal Ant: masculine 2) her womanly figure Syn: voluptuous, curvaceous, shapely, ample, buxom …   Thesaurus of popular words

  • womanly — adjective 1) womanly virtues Syn: feminine, female 2) her womanly figure Syn: voluptuous, curvaceous, shapely, ample, buxom, full figured; informal curvy, busty • Ant …   Synonyms and antonyms dictionary

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