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

  • n. A tiny imaginary being in human form, depicted as clever, mischievous, and possessing magical powers.
  • n. Offensive Slang Used as a disparaging term for a homosexual man.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. the realm of faerie; enchantment, illusion.
  • n. A mythical being who had magical powers, known in many sizes and descriptions, although often depicted in modern illustrations only as small and spritely with gauze-like wings; A sprite.
  • n. a male homosexual, especially one who is effeminate.
  • n. A nature spirit revered in modern paganism.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to fairies.
  • adj. Given by fairies.
  • n. Enchantment; illusion.
  • n. The country of the fays; land of illusions.
  • n. An imaginary supernatural being or spirit, supposed to assume a human form (usually diminutive), either male or female, and to meddle for good or evil in the affairs of mankind; a fay. See Elf, and Demon.
  • n. An enchantress.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Enchantment; magic.
  • n. An imaginary being or spirit, generally represented as of a diminutive and graceful human form, but capable of assuming any other, and as playing pranks, frolicsome, kindly, mischievous, or spiteful, on human beings or among themselves; a fay.
  • n. Fays collectively; fairy folk.
  • n. Fairy-land; elf-land.
  • n. An enchantress.
  • n. Synonyms Fairy, Elf, Fay; Sylph, Gnome; Jinn, Genie; Goblin. Fairy is the most general name for a diminutive imaginary being, generally in human form, sometimes very benevolent or inclined to teach moral lessons, as the fairy godmother of Cinderella; sometimes malevolent in the extreme, as in many fairy stories. Spenser took up the word in Chaucer's spelling, faerie or faery, and gave it an extended meaning, which is now commonly confined to that spelling and to his poem; the personages in “The Faery Queene” live in an unlocated region, essentially like the rest of the world, and are of heroic and occasionally supernatural powers; these personages he sometimes calls elves or elfins. In ordinary use an elf differs from a fairy only in generally seeming young, and being more often mischievous. Pope, in “The Rape of the Lock,” has given a definite cast to sylph and gnome; these two words are elsewhere often associated, gnomes having always been fabled as living in underground abodes, and especially as being the guardians of mines and quarries, while sylphs are denizens of the air. From this difference of place it has followed that gnomes are generally thought of with repugnance or dread, and sylphs, although of both sexes in literature, are popularly thought of as young, slender, and graceful females: hence the expression “a sylph-like form.” To Oriental imagination is due the jinn, djinn, or jinnee; the form genie is most vividly associated with the “Arabian Nights”: as, the genie of Aladdin's lamp; the genie that the fisherman let out of the bottle. A goblin is wicked, mischievous, or at least roguish, and frightful or grotesque in appearance. See the definitions of kobold, sylph, brownie, banshee, sprite, pixie, nixie, nymph, etc.
  • Pertaining to or in some manner connected with fairies; done by or coming from fairies. See phrases below.
  • Resembling in some way a fairy; hence, fanciful, graceful, whimsical, fantastic, etc.: as, fairy creatures or favors.

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

  • n. a small being, human in form, playful and having magical powers
  • n. offensive term for an openly homosexual man


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

Middle English fairie, fairyland, enchanted being, from Old French faerie, from fae, fairy, from Vulgar Latin Fāta, goddess of fate, from Latin fātum, fate; see fate.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English fairie, from Old French faerie, the -erie abstract of fae, from Vulgar Latin Fāta ("goddess of fate"), from Latin fātum ("fate")


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  • WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: And happening now: Bill Clinton returns to what he calls a fairy tale.

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  • And coming up in the second half of RELIABLE SOURCES, Bill Clinton blasts the press for perpetuating what he calls a fairy tale.

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  • Then he is what they call a fairy man, a person in league with fairies and spirits, and able to work much harm by supernatural means, on which account they hold him in great awe; he is, moreover, a mighty strong and tall fellow.


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  • FAirY

    May 17, 2008