Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of or relating to the caution and avoidance of direct confrontation typical of the Roman general Quintus Fabius Maximus.
  • adj. Cautious or dilatory, as in taking action.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or being a member of the Fabian Society, which was committed to gradual rather than revolutionary means for spreading socialist principles.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Pertaining to or reminiscent of Roman general Fabius Maximus, whose tactics against Hannibal during the Second Punic War famously consisted of delaying or avoiding combat, focusing instead on weakening the enemy by cutting off supply lines.
  • adj. Advocating that social reforms be reached through a series of gradual and moderate stages rather than sudden revolution; specifically, relating to the Fabian Society, a British socialist society advocating reformist socialism.
  • adj. cautious; dilatory; avoiding a decisive contest.
  • n. A Fabian socialist, a gradualist socialist; a member of the Fabian Society.
  • proper n. A male given name borne by an early pope. Rare in English.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of, pertaining to, or in the manner of, the Roman general, Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus; cautious; dilatory; avoiding a decisive contest.
  • adj. Of or pertaining to the Roman gens Fabia.
  • adj. Designating, or pertaining to, a society of socialists, organized in England in 1884 to spread socialistic principles gradually without violent agitation.
  • n. A member of, or sympathizer with, the Fabian Society.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Delaying; dilatory; avoiding battle, in the manner of Quintus Fabius Maximus, a Roman general, who in conducting military operations against Hannibal declined to risk a battle in the open field, but harassed the enemy by marches, countermarches, and ambuscades.
  • Designating a variety or school of socialism more flexible and opportunist than the socialism of Marx and the International, and laying emphasis on municipal experiments in public ownership. See Fabian Society.
  • n. A member of the Fabian Society.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. using cautious slow strategy to wear down opposition; avoiding direct confrontation
  • n. a member of the Fabian Society in Britain
  • adj. of or relating to Fabianism

Etymologies

Latin Fabiānus, after Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin Fabianus ("belonging to Fabius"), possibly derived from faba ("bean"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Karina Fabian is an award winning writer and the President of the Catholic Writers Guild, and has four kids and only five pets.

    Archive 2008-07-01

  • “Fabian is a rider I have always wanted on my team,” Andersen explained.

    Fuglsang, Wegmann, Gerdemann to Luxembourg Project

  • Magic, Mensa & Mayhem is set in Fabian's Dragon Eye P.I. universe, where a nuclear disaster in Colorado has opened a rift in space-time leading to Faerie, an alternate Earth populated by the usual array of legendary and mythological beings, where much of the world more-or-less resembles a fantasy version of Medieval Europe.

    Archive 2010-06-01

  • "Fabian is a great champion ... (but) my form is very good," the 26-year-old Spaniard said.

    Armstrong places 10th in Stage 1 of Tour de France

  • Karina Fabian is hard at work on the Online Writer's Conference that will be held the week of May 9.

    Tips, Hints, and Wishes...

  • He was often described as a Fabian socialist rather than an orthodox communist.

    Rocket News

  • “The only solution was to fight a defensive --- what they called a Fabian strategy --- or a war of posts.

    Historian: Iraq War Violates America's "Historic Identity"

  • BECK: And he and H.G. Wells were part of something called Fabian Socialists.

    CNN Transcript Feb 22, 2008

  • This is what a master's student named Fabian in the UK name Fabian is doing and sharing through his blog Urban Tick (see his introductory post about the project).

    Google Earth Blog

  • I understand that during the 1930's there was a group called The Fabian project &

    WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

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