fawn 1 (fôn)
intr.v. fawned, fawn·ing, fawns
1. To exhibit affection or attempt to please, as a dog does by wagging its tail, whining, or cringing.
2. To seek favor or attention by flattery and obsequious behavior.
[Middle English faunen, from Old English fagnian, to rejoice, from fagen, fægen, glad.]
Synonyms: fawn1, bootlick, kowtow, slaver1, toady, truckle
These verbs mean to seek or gain favor by behaving obsequiously and submissively: fawned on her superior; bootlicked to get a promotion; lawyers kowtowing to a judge; slavered over his rich uncle; toadying to members of the club; nobles truckling to the king.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.