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cantankerous

[kan-tang-ker-uh s] /kænˈtæŋ kər əs/
adjective
1.
disagreeable to deal with; contentious; peevish:
a cantankerous, argumentative man.
Origin of cantankerous
1765-1775
1765-75; perhaps variant of earlier *contenkerous, reflecting contentious, rancorous
Related forms
cantankerously, adverb
cantankerousness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for cantankerousness
Historical Examples
  • I suppose it's what Papa used to call his "originality," and Mamma his "cantankerousness," coming out in me.

    My Friend the Chauffeur C. N. Williamson and A. M. Williamson
  • They felt that Keith, for all his "cantankerousness," might be right.

    The Calico Cat Charles Miner Thompson
  • Naturally it is only in the minor stupors that we see it in well-developed form as active opposition and cantankerousness.

    Benign Stupors August Hoch
  • In the partial stupors it is seen as active opposition and cantankerousness.

    Benign Stupors August Hoch
  • Thoreau with all his cantankerousness came nearer to the new literature.

    In Pastures Green Peter McArthur
  • It was like the emancipation of the slaves, and the whole of Scotch cantankerousness came to a height.

British Dictionary definitions for cantankerousness

cantankerous

/kænˈtæŋkərəs/
adjective
1.
quarrelsome; irascible
Derived Forms
cantankerously, adverb
cantankerousness, noun
Word Origin
C18: perhaps from C14 (obsolete) conteckour a contentious person, from conteck strife, from Anglo-French contek, of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for cantankerousness

cantankerous

adj.

1772, said to be "a Wiltshire word," probably from an alteration (influenced by raucous) of Middle English contakour "troublemaker" (c.1300), from Anglo-French contec "discord, strife," from Old French contechier (Old North French contekier), from con- "with" + teche, related to atachier "hold fast" (see attach). With -ous. Related: Cantankerously; cantankerousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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