adj. quaint·er, quaint·est
1. Charmingly odd, especially in an old-fashioned way: "Sarah Orne Jewett ... was dismissed by one critic as merely a New England old maid who wrote quaint, plotless sketches of late 19th-century coastal Maine" (James McManus).
2. Archaic Unfamiliar or unusual in character; strange: quaint dialect words.
3. Archaic Cleverly made or done.
[Middle English queinte, cointe, clever, cunning, peculiar, from Old French, clever, from Latin cognitus, past participle of cognōscere, to learn; see COGNITION.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. 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.