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harridan

[hahr-i-dn] /ˈhɑr ɪ dn/
noun
1.
a scolding, vicious woman; hag; shrew.
Origin of harridan
1690-1700
1690-1700; perhaps alteration of French haridelle thin, worn-out horse, large, gaunt woman (compared with the initial element of haras stud farm, though derivation is unclear)
Synonyms
nag, virago, scold.
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British Dictionary definitions for harridan

harridan

/ˈhærɪdən/
noun
1.
a scolding old woman; nag
Word Origin
C17: of uncertain origin; perhaps related to French haridelle, literally: broken-down horse; of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
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Word Origin and History for harridan
n.

1700, "one that is half Whore, half Bawd" ["Dictionary of the Canting Crew"]; "a decayed strumpet" [Johnson], probably from French haridelle "a poore tit, or leane ill-favored jade," [Cotgrave, 1611], in French from 16c., of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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