The fancy


The fancy
Fancy Fan"cy (f[a^]n"s[y^]), n.; pl. {Fancies}. [Contr. fr. fantasy, OF. fantasie, fantaisie, F. fantaisie, L. phantasia, fr. Gr. ???????? appearance, imagination, the power of perception and presentation in the mind, fr. ???????? to make visible, to place before one's mind, fr. ??????? to show; akin to ????, ???, light, Skr. bh[=a]to shine. Cf. {Fantasy}, {Fantasia}, {Epiphany}, {Phantom}.] 1. The faculty by which the mind forms an image or a representation of anything perceived before; the power of combining and modifying such objects into new pictures or images; the power of readily and happily creating and recalling such objects for the purpose of amusement, wit, or embellishment; imagination. [1913 Webster]

In the soul Are many lesser faculties, that serve Reason as chief. Among these fancy next Her office holds. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

2. An image or representation of anything formed in the mind; conception; thought; idea; conceit. [1913 Webster]

How now, my lord ! why do you keep alone, Of sorriest fancies your companoins making ? --Shak. [1913 Webster]

3. An opinion or notion formed without much reflection; caprice; whim; impression. [1913 Webster]

I have always had a fancy that learning might be made a play and recreation to children. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

4. Inclination; liking, formed by caprice rather than reason; as, to strike one's fancy; hence, the object of inclination or liking. [1913 Webster]

To fit your fancies to your father's will. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

5. That which pleases or entertains the taste or caprice without much use or value. [1913 Webster]

London pride is a pretty fancy for borders. --Mortimer. [1913 Webster]

6. A sort of love song or light impromptu ballad. [Obs.] --Shak. [1913 Webster]

{The fancy}, all of a class who exhibit and cultivate any peculiar taste or fancy; hence, especially, sporting characters taken collectively, or any specific class of them, as jockeys, gamblers, prize fighters, etc. [1913 Webster]

At a great book sale in London, which had congregated all the fancy. --De Quincey.

Syn: Imagination; conceit; taste; humor; inclination; whim; liking. See {Imagination}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.