1. Smartly or boldly stylish; dashing: a gallant feathered hat; cut a gallant figure at the coronation.
a. Unflinching in battle or action; valiant: put up a gallant resistance to the attackers.
b. Nobly or selflessly resolute: made a gallant attempt to save her friend's reputation.
3. Stately; majestic: a gallant ship.
a. Courteously attentive especially to women; chivalrous.
b. Flirtatious; amorous.
n. (gə-lănt, -länt, gălənt)
1. A fashionable young man.
a. A man courteously attentive to women.
b. A male lover, especially one who is courteously attentive.
v. (gə-lănt, -länt) gal·lant·ed, gal·lant·ing, gal·lants
To woo or pay court to (a lady).
To play the gallant.
[Middle English galaunt, from Old French galant, present participle of galer, to rejoice, of Germanic origin; see wel-1 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 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.