\ \ [19] Feisty, nowadays a colloquial Americanism for ‘quarrelsome’ or ‘spirited’, originated in Middle English as a term for a ‘farting dog’. It goes back to the now obsolete English verb fistfart’, which came ultimately from Indo-European *pezd- (source also of Latin pēderebreak wind’, whence English petardsmall bomb’ [16], as in ‘hoist with one’s own petard’); like *perd-, the Indo-European ancestor of English fart, this was probably of imitative origin. In the 16th and 17th centuries the expression fisting dog, literally ‘farting dog’, was applied contemptuously to a ‘mongrel’ or ‘cur’. This eventually became shortened to feist, and (mongrels being notoriously combative) feisty was born.

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • feisty — 1896, aggressive, exuberant, touchy, Amer.Eng., with Y (Cf. y) (2) + feist small dog, earlier fice, fist (Amer.Eng., 1805); short for fysting curre stinking cur, attested from 1520s, from M.E. fysten, fisten break wind (mid 15c.); related to O.E …   Etymology dictionary

  • feisty — [adj] spirited; touchy active, alive, bubbly, courageous, difficult, enthusiastic, excitable, fiery, frisky, full of pep, game, gritty, gutsy, gutty, high strung, hot blooded, lively, mettlesome, ornery, peppy, quarrelsome, scrappy, sensitive,… …   New thesaurus

  • feisty — ► ADJECTIVE (feistier, feistiest) informal 1) spirited and exuberant. 2) touchy and aggressive. DERIVATIVES feistily adverb feistiness noun. ORIGIN from obsolete feist «small dog», from fisting cur or ho …   English terms dictionary

  • feisty — ☆ feisty [fīs′tē ] adj. feistier, feistiest [ FEIST + Y2] [Informal or Dial.] full of spirit; specif., a) quarrelsome, aggressive, belligerent, etc. b) lively, energetic, spunky, etc. feistily adv. feistiness n …   English World dictionary

  • Feisty — Liste des versions d Ubuntu Article principal : Ubuntu. Les nouvelles versions d’Ubuntu, sortent deux fois par an, utilisant l’année et le mois de la sortie comme numéro de version. La première version, par exemple, était Ubuntu 4.10,… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • feisty — [[t]fa͟ɪsti[/t]] ADJ GRADED If you describe someone as feisty, you mean that they are tough, independent, and spirited, often when you would not expect them to be, for example because they are old or ill. The soldier looked incredulously at the… …   English dictionary

  • feisty — UK [ˈfaɪstɪ] / US adjective Word forms feisty : adjective feisty comparative feistier superlative feistiest full of energy and lively determination feisty young women …   English dictionary

  • feisty — feistily, adv. feistiness, n. /fuy stee/, adj., feistier, feistiest. 1. full of animation, energy, or courage; spirited; spunky; plucky: The champion is faced with a feisty challenger. 2. ill tempered; pugnacious. 3. troublesome; difficult:… …   Universalium

  • feisty — [19] Feisty, nowadays a colloquial Americanism for ‘quarrelsome’ or ‘spirited’, originated in Middle English as a term for a ‘farting dog’. It goes back to the now obsolete English verb fist ‘fart’, which came ultimately from Indo European *pezd… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • feisty — adjective (feistier; est) Date: 1896 1. chiefly Southern & Midland a. full of nervous energy ; fidgety b. touchy, quarrelsome c. exuberantly frisky 2. having or showing a lively aggressiveness ; …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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