AskDefine | Define whimsey

The Collaborative Dictionary

Whimsey \Whim"sey\, Whimsy \Whimsy\, n.; pl. Whimseysor Whimsies. [See Whim.] [1913 Webster]
A whim; a freak; a capricious notion, a fanciful or odd conceit. "The whimsies of poets and painters." --Ray. [1913 Webster] Men's folly, whimsies, and inconstancy. --Swift. [1913 Webster] Mistaking the whimseys of a feverish brain for the calm revelation of truth. --Bancroft. [1913 Webster]
(Mining) A whim. [1913 Webster]
Whim \Whim\, n. [Cf. Icel. hwima to wander with the eyes, vim giddiness, Norw. kvima to whisk or flutter about, to trifle, Dan. vimse to skip, whisk, jump from one thing to another, dial. Sw. hvimsa to be unsteady, dizzy, W. chwimio to move briskly.] [1913 Webster]
A sudden turn or start of the mind; a temporary eccentricity; a freak; a fancy; a capricious notion; a humor; a caprice. [1913 Webster] Let every man enjoy his whim. --Churchill. [1913 Webster]
(Mining) A large capstan or vertical drum turned by horse power or steam power, for raising ore or water, etc., from mines, or for other purposes; -- called also whim gin, and whimsey. [1913 Webster] Whim gin (Mining), a whim. See Whim,
Whim shaft (Mining), a shaft through which ore, water, etc., is raised from a mine by means of a whim. [1913 Webster] Syn: Freak; caprice; whimsey; fancy. Usage: Whim, Freak, Caprice. Freak denotes an impulsive, inconsiderate change of mind, as by a child or a lunatic. Whim is a mental eccentricity due to peculiar processes or habits of thought. Caprice is closely allied in meaning to freak, but implies more definitely a quality of willfulness or wantonness. [1913 Webster]
Whimsey \Whim"sey\, v. t. To fill with whimseys, or whims; to make fantastic; to craze. [R.] [1913 Webster] To have a man's brain whimsied with his wealth. --J. Fletcher. [1913 Webster]

Word Net



1 an odd or fanciful or capricious idea; "the theatrical notion of disguise is associated with disaster in his stories"; "he had a whimsy about flying to the moon"; "whimsy can be humorous to someone with time to enjoy it" [syn: notion, whim, whimsy]
2 the trait of acting unpredictably and more from whim or caprice than from reason or judgment; "I despair at the flightiness and whimsicality of my memory" [syn: flightiness, arbitrariness, whimsicality, whimsy, capriciousness]



  1. alternative spelling of whimsy
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