One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A person who is contemptibly lacking in the courage to do or endure dangerous or unpleasant things.‘they had run away—the cowards!’
weakling, milksop, namby-pamby, mouseView synonyms
- ‘By demonstrating their courage, they have shown you for the cowards you are.’
- ‘You're one of those men who like to make cowards think you're tough and dangerous.’
- ‘‘Our power is wielded by weaklings and cowards, and our honour is false in all its points’.’
- ‘But, when officers confronted Parker, he proved to be a craven coward who literally pulsed with guilt.’
- ‘Anonymous sources generally are cowards, who often tell more than they know.’
- ‘Were one half of mankind brave and one half cowards, the brave would be always beating the cowards.’
- ‘They were barely able to drag themselves back to camp like the pathetic weaklings and cowards they are.’
- ‘What about the possibility that we somehow have raised a generation of moral cowards?’
- ‘All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites.’
- ‘I am nothing but a coward who is too afraid to cruise the sea.’
- ‘In the end this aids only those who are served by public uncertainty - the cowards and the ruthless.’
- ‘Better to die of frostbite in that group of young guns than be branded a coward.’
- ‘To try to pretend he's not what he is: a poor, stinking, whimpering coward.’
- ‘He resigns his commission and is branded a coward.’
- ‘Hamlet says, this is what makes cowards of us all.’
- ‘Due to my not being enraged or scared of these cowards, there was no fear, and I believe they sensed that.’
- ‘Yet I cannot believe that he is a moral coward by nature.’
- ‘The great thing about academics is that they are typically spineless cowards who really do respond to sufficient pressure.’
- ‘And in the end, he himself was revealed to be a miserable coward.’
- ‘Oh, and by the way, you're a gutless, treasonous coward.’
1literary Excessively afraid of danger or pain.
- ‘We were always discussing that he is a coward man, that he will not fight for his life, that he will not fight for what he believes in.’
- ‘Surely everyone must have been able to hear the erratic pounding of her coward heart.’
- ‘She squared her jaw and turned, feeling foolishly coward.’
- ‘I say it to you, coward spirit - not to anyone who abides by this code!’
- ‘Aidan had lost count how many times he'd cried himself to sleep in order to escape the pain that he was too coward to relieve himself of.’
(of an animal) depicted with the tail between the hind legs.
Middle English: from Old French couard, based on Latin cauda ‘tail’, possibly with reference to a frightened animal with its tail between its legs, reflected in coward (sense 2 of the adjective) (early 16th century).
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