Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. A fat and jolly knight. The character was invented by William Shakespeare for his plays Henry IV (parts 1 and 2) and also appeared in The Merry Wives of Windsor.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • proper n. Sir John Falstaff, a celebrated character in Shakespeare's historical play " Henry IV." (1st and 2d parts), and also in " The Merry Wives of Windsor." He is a very fat, sensual, and witty old knight; a swindler, drunkard, and good-tempered liar; and something of a coward. Falstaff was originally called Sir John Oldcastle. The first actor of the part was John Heminge.

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

  • n. a dissolute character in Shakespeare's plays

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • But I agree with you that Falstaff is almost completely bulletproof.

    Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now

  • To be sure, Falstaff is a rake, a ne'er-do-well, and a lousy soldier, not to mention horrifically overweight.

    Shakespeare in Love, or in Context

  • Whereas Falstaff is of a dissipated and questionable character, Zagloba has a heart of gold; he is faithful to his friends in times of danger.

    Nobel Prize in Literature 1905 - Presentation Speech

  • Verdi's "Falstaff" -- would be revived was brilliantly redeemed.

    Chapters of Opera Being historical and critical observations and records concerning the lyric drama in New York from its earliest days down to the present time

  • While many of these seemingly impervious works belong to Mozart, Verdi’s Falstaff is another.

    Archive 2008-08-01

  • It was quite well done all-round--no weak links in the cast or direction--but what makes it worth $65 is Kline's performance as Falstaff, which is revelatory in the sense that it allows Shakespeare's words to shine through clearly without additional "playacting" on his part.

    Fun at Lincoln Center.

  • It is not Falstaff but Shakespeare who says that “the poor abuses of the time want countenance”; and later in the play, when the character of Falstaff is fully developed, it is Shakespeare, the thinker, who calls Falstaff's ragged regiment “the cankers of a calm world and a long peace.”

    The Man Shakespeare

  • He thinks, indeed -- and small wonder -- that there is "a genuine difficulty in distinguishing between the comic and the tragic," and that what we need is some formula which shall accurately interpret the precise qualities of each, and he is disposed to illustrate his theory by dwelling on the tragic side of Falstaff, which is, of all injuries, the grimmest and hardest to forgive.

    Masterpieces of American Wit and Humor

  • John Oldcastle, to the character now known as Falstaff, evidences on the part of the public such a settled familiarity with this same character, under the old name, as to suggest frequent presentations of

    Shakespeare's Lost Years in London, 1586-1592

  • It is not Falstaff but Shakespeare who says that "the poor abuses of the time want countenance"; and later in the play, when the character of Falstaff is fully developed, it is Shakespeare, the thinker, who calls Falstaff's ragged regiment "the cankers of a calm world and a long peace."

    The Man Shakespeare

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