oafish

oaf

[ohf]
noun
1.
a clumsy, stupid person; lout.
2.
a simpleton; dunce; blockhead.
3.
Archaic.
a.
a deformed or mentally deficient child.
b.
a changeling.

Origin:
1615–25; variant of auf, Middle English alfe, Old English ælf elf; cognate with German Alp nightmare

oafish, adjective
oafishly, adverb
oafishness, noun

oaf, oath.


1. churl, boor. 2. dolt, ninny.
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World English Dictionary
oaf (əʊf)
 
n
a stupid or loutish person
 
[C17: variant of Old English ælfelf]
 
'oafish
 
adj
 
'oafishly
 
adv
 
'oafishness
 
n

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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

oaf
1610 (implied in oafish), also auf (1621), "a changeling; a foolish child left by the fairies" [Johnson], from a Scand. source, cf. Norw. alfr "silly person," in O.N., "elf" (see elf). Hence, "a misbegotten, deformed idiot." Until recently, some dictionaries still gave the plural as oaves.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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