Definition of penchant in US English:



  • usually in singular A strong or habitual liking for something or tendency to do something.

    ‘he has a penchant for adopting stray dogs’
    • ‘The Bulgarian has a penchant for going to ground easily under challenges.’
    • ‘Bet you didn't know I was a whizz knitter with a special penchant for fancy multi-coloured designs.’
    • ‘Anyone with a penchant for numbers can have a go at guessing the number of coffee beans in a huge jar on the day to receive a prize.’
    • ‘Are you a 13-16 year old girl with a penchant for acting and a future as bright as the sun itself?’
    • ‘We thought he was a great big fat squeaky-voiced cricketer with a tiresome penchant for laddish behaviour.’
    • ‘Just ask its programming boss, an energetic philosophy graduate with a penchant for John Stuart Mill.’
    • ‘She plays a New York socialite and actress who is a lousy mother and has a penchant for good-looking young men.’
    • ‘He also has a penchant for catchy one-liners, ideally suited to television.’
    • ‘Photographs show her as glamorous with a penchant for fashions with a nipped-in waist and large hats.’
    • ‘As well as a love of vegetables he has a penchant for historical documentaries.’
    • ‘This year's federal election campaign still suggests a penchant for refusing to confront reality.’
    • ‘Both women had a penchant for people with titles, even spurious ones.’
    • ‘That is a perennial weakness of princes - a penchant for false-hearted favourites.’
    • ‘His penchant for tall, rakish women and strong, musclebound men is alive and well and still living in New York.’
    • ‘The most important of these tendencies are a deep passion for equality itself and a penchant for independent action.’
    • ‘Those with a penchant for acting on the silver screen need not be disappointed.’
    • ‘History in Edinburgh has a peculiar penchant for throwing together people, politics and passion.’
    • ‘You may have guessed that I have a penchant for love poems, well I suppose I'm just an old romantic at heart.’
    • ‘The pictures show a country with a truly biased curriculum and a penchant for martyrdom.’
    • ‘We've all encountered characters with a penchant for telling tall tales.’
    flavour, savour, relish, tang, smack
    liking, fondness, preference, taste, relish, appetite, partiality, soft spot, love, passion, desire, fancy, whim, weakness, inclination, bent, bias, proclivity, predilection, predisposition, affinity
    View synonyms


Late 17th century: from French, ‘leaning, inclining’, present participle of the verb pencher.