English Dictionary

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zany (ˈzeɪnɪ

Definitions

adjective

-nier or -niest
  1. comical in an endearing way; imaginatively funny or comical, esp in behaviour

▷ 

noun

(plural) -nies
  1. a clown or buffoon, esp one in old comedies who imitated other performers with ludicrous effect
  2. a ludicrous or foolish person

Derived Forms

ˈzanily  adverb
ˈzaniness  noun
ˈzanyism  noun

Word Origin

C16: from Italian zanni, from dialect (Venice and Lombardy) Zanni, nickname for Giovanni John; one of the traditional names for a clown

Synonyms

View thesaurus entry
= comical, crazy, nutty (slang), funny, eccentric, wacky (slang), loony (slang), oddball (informal), madcap, goofy (informal), kooky (US) (informal), out there (slang), clownish, wacko or whacko (informal), off the air (Australian) (slang)
= clown, nut (slang), comedian, wag, joker, jester, buffoon, screwball (slang) (mainly US) ( & Canadian), joculator or (fem.) joculatrix, merry-andrew

Example Sentences Including 'zany'

Grumbling, Sameth went to the door, expecting some zany or village fool to grin up at him from behind a breakfast tray.
Garth Nix LIRAEL: DAUGHTER OF THE CLAYR (2001)

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