caress

[kuh-res]
noun
1.
an act or gesture expressing affection, as an embrace or kiss, especially a light stroking or touching.
verb (used with object)
2.
to touch or pat gently to show affection.
3.
to touch, stroke, etc., lightly, as if in affection: The breeze caressed the trees.
4.
to treat with favor, kindness, etc.

Origin:
1605–15; < French caresse < Italian carezza < Vulgar Latin *caritia, equivalent to Latin cār(us) dear + -itia suffix of abstract nouns; cf. charity

caressable, adjective
caresser, noun
caressingly, adverb
uncaressed, adjective
uncaressing, adjective
uncaressingly, adverb


1. pat, fondling, hug.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
caress (kəˈrɛs)
 
n
1.  a gentle touch or embrace, esp one given to show affection
 
vb
2.  (tr) to touch or stroke gently with affection or as with affection: the wind caressed her face
 
[C17: from French caresse, from Italian carezza, from Latin cārus dear]
 
ca'resser
 
n
 
ca'ressingly
 
adv

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

caress
1651, from Fr. caresser, from It. carezzare "endearment," ult. from L. carita, from carus "dear" (see whore).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
As an adult, her fantasy is about having her breasts caressed by a faceless
  stranger who reaches over her head.
He still caressed the sheep, but it was dead and beginning to stiffen.
He caressed the animal and was indeed glad to have company for he began to
  recall a legend that the house was haunted.
The robe slipping from his shoulder reveals a bare nape caressed by soft curls.
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