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feign

[feyn] /feɪn/
verb (used with object)
1.
to represent fictitiously; put on an appearance of:
to feign sickness.
2.
to invent fictitiously or deceptively, as a story or an excuse.
3.
to imitate deceptively:
to feign another's voice.
verb (used without object)
4.
to make believe; pretend:
She's only feigning, she isn't really ill.
Origin of feign
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English fei(g)nen < Old French feign-, present stem of feindre < Latin fingere to shape, invent, feign
Related forms
feigner, noun
feigningly, adverb
unfeigning, adjective
unfeigningly, adverb
Can be confused
fain, faint, feign, feint.
Synonyms
4. See pretend.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for feigning
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He lay still and silent, however, feigning death, for to have discovered himself would have resulted in his instant despatch.

    Sir Henry Morgan, Buccaneer Cyrus Townsend Brady
  • Therese had closed her eyelids some time previously, feigning slumber.

    Therese Raquin Emile Zola
  • At last I made up my mind, and feigning indisposition I left them sitting at the table—where they perhaps still are.

    The Memoirs of Madame Vige Lebrun Marie Louise Elisabeth Vige-Lebrun
  • Because it suited her deep purpose, Mary consented, feigning to be persuaded.

  • And feigning sleep he listened, determined to hear the worst that could be said of him.

    The Brook Kerith George Moore
British Dictionary definitions for feigning

feign

/feɪn/
verb
1.
to put on a show of (a quality or emotion); pretend: to feign innocence
2.
(transitive) to make up; invent: to feign an excuse
3.
(transitive) to copy; imitate: to feign someone's laugh
Derived Forms
feigner, noun
feigningly, adverb
Word Origin
C13: from Old French feindre to pretend, from Latin fingere to form, shape, invent
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 feigning

feign

v.

c.1300, from Old French feign-, present participle stem of feindre "pretend, represent, imitate, shirk" (12c.), from Latin fingere "to touch, handle; devise; fabricate, alter, change" (see fiction). Related: Feigned; feigning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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13
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