Definitions

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

  • adj. Fierce; wild: an artist who was farouche even in everyday life.
  • adj. Exhibiting withdrawn temperament and shyness coupled with an air of cranky, often sullen fey charm: "small, farouche poems illustrated with doodles, a cross between Ogden Nash and Blake” ( Rosemary Dinnage).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Sullen or recalcitrant.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Distant or repellent in manner; unsociable; shy.

Etymologies

French, from Old French faroche, alteration of forasche, from Late Latin forāsticus, belonging outside, from Latin forās, out of doors; see foreign.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French farouche. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Mirabeau (who was to be the father of the famous orator) was a man of talent, but violent, chimerical and lawless, "farouche," as he himself put it.

    Three French Moralists and The Gallantry of France

  • His ascendancy among his countrymen was perfectly undisputed, and being possessed of great muscular strength, with that peculiarly "farouche" exterior, without which courage is nothing in France, he was in every way calculated for the infamous leadership he assumed.

    The Confessions of Harry Lorrequer — Complete

  • In the meantime also if you ask me, some of these straight boys are enjoying the farouche walk-on-the-wild-side thrill of going there.

    Archive 2008-10-01

  • “Lúlúah,” which may mean the Union-pearl; but here used in the sense of wild cow, the bubalus antelope, alluding to the farouche nature of Miss Jamilah.

    The Book of The Thousand Nights And A Night

  • By these she was adored, and loved like a mother almost, for as such the hearty kindly girl showed herself to them; but at home she was alone, farouche and intractable, and did battle with the governesses, and overcame them one after another.

    The Newcomes

  • I notice the most farouche men do when they are engaged.

    Red Pottage

  • I could only see him in profile; but there was no mistaking the white moustache, the farouche visage, and the gaunt six-foot stature.

    The Room in the Dragon Volant

  • His manner was superficially assured, underneath perhaps half-savage, shy and farouche, and deprecating.

    The Plumed Serpent

  • ‘Watch the stairs!’ said Ramón in Spanish to her, glancing at her with farouche eyes, from some far remote jungle.

    The Plumed Serpent

  • He fumbled in a farouche way, confused as to whether to kiss her hand or to shake it.

    At Swim, Two Boys

Comments

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  • Essentially an autoantonym? But perhaps the withdrawn can also be wild.

    January 29, 2013

  • "I've never liked Richmond Park's contrived ambience of the farouche — a centuries' old shtick."
    Psychogeography by Will Self, 30

    October 11, 2010

  • "Undie shops run a staple line in playful pantees with clefts in the crotch and cheering inscriptions upon them, all diaphanous and vivid in black and white or red or leopard-skin for the truly farouche."
    - 'Going Without', Germaine Greer in The Sunday Times, 1971.

    April 13, 2008

  • 1. fierce.
    2. sullenly unsociable or shy.

    February 12, 2008