one of any of several breeds of small or medium-sized dogs, usually having a long, silky coat and long, drooping ears.
a submissive, fawning, or cringing person.

1350–1400; Middle English spaynel < Old French espaignol Spanish (dog), derivative of Espaigne Spain

spaniellike, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
spaniel (ˈspænjəl)
1.  clumber spaniel cocker spaniel field spaniel springer spaniel Sussex spaniel See water spaniel any of several breeds of gundog with long drooping ears, a silky coat, and formerly a docked tail
2.  See King Charles spaniel either of two toy breeds of spaniel
3.  an obsequiously devoted person
[C14: from Old French espaigneul Spanish (dog), from Old Provençal espanhol, ultimately from Latin Hispāniolus Spanish]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

13c., as a surname meaning "Spaniard;" as a name for a breed of dog of Sp. origin, late 14c., from O.Fr. espagneul, lit. "Spanish (dog)," from V.L. *Hispaniolus "of Spain," dim. of L. Hispanus "Spanish, Hispanic" (see Spaniard).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for Spaniels
In thick undergrowth they were also preferred to spaniels when hunting pheasant.
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