Definition of zany in English:
adjective (zanier, zaniest)
- His zany humour took comedy to new heights of absurdity.
- We both liked making costumes and had a similarly zany sense of humour.
- For those with a zany sense of humor, the adventures of Lieutenant Frank Drebin were a laugh riot from beginning to end.
nounBack to top
Late 16th century: from French zani or Italian zan(n)i, Venetian form of Gianni, Giovanni 'John', stock name of the servants acting as clowns in the commedia dell'arte.
Zany was the name of one of the servants in the improvized Italian theatre, the commedia dell'arte, popular from the 16th to 18th centuries. The word is a Venetian form of Gianni, which itself is short for Giovanni. In its earliest uses in English a zany was a comic performer who imitated the actions of a clown or acrobat, and zany described his behaviour. See also pantaloons
Words that rhyme with zanyBahraini, brainy, Chaney, Eugénie, grainy, Janey, Khomeini, rainy, veiny, waney
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