v. feigned, feign·ing, feigns
a. To give a false appearance of: feign sleep.
b. To represent falsely; pretend to: feign authorship of a novel.
2. To imitate so as to deceive: feign another's voice.
3. To fabricate: feigned an excuse.
4. Archaic To invent or imagine.
To pretend; dissemble.
[Middle English feinen, from Old French feindre, from Latin fingere, to shape, form; see dheigh- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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.