January 14, 2013
- frank (adjective)
- What does it mean?
- : free in speaking one's feelings and opinions
- How do you use it?
- "He trusted he had not lowered himself in the good opinion of his friends by this frank confession of his faults . . ." (Charles Dickens, _The Pickwick Papers_)
- Are you a word wiz?
It seems funny to call someone "frank," unless that is his name! Who or what do you think accounts for the word "frank" to describe someone who speaks openly?Germanic tribes known as the Franks migrated into the northern part of the Roman territory of Gaul in the 400s A.D. Within 200 years, the region they settled was called Francia, eventually to become modern France. By the 8th century, the Latin word "Francus" ("Frank") meant any free person (that is, not a slave) living in Francia, whether or not a descendant of the Franks. "Francus" came to mean "freeman," and as an adjective, "free." In Old French "francus" became "franc" and developed a large number of meanings. One meaning was "free and sincere in expression," which was borrowed into English as the adjective "frank."