One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1archaic A vain and conceited man; a dandy.
fop, beau, man about town, bright young thing, glamour boy, rakeView synonyms
- ‘As an afterthought, the red-headed girl suddenly added, ‘Good gracious, that Adam Weatherly is such a coxcomb.’’
- ‘His manner assures her ‘that he was exactly the coxcomb she had heard him described to be.’’
- ‘Wouldn't that be egg all over the face of the dizzy-eyed coxcomb of a Prime Minister.’
- ‘He was annoyed at the man's insolence but realised he must have appeared a coxcomb in Mr. Howitt's eyes.’
- ‘He is a silly and superficial man, a fop or coxcomb.’
2variant spelling of cockscomb (sense 2)
Mid 16th century (denoting a simpleton): variant of cockscomb, in the sense ‘jester's cap’ (resembling a cockscomb), hence ‘a jester, a fool’.
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