A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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View Scan · View Transcription · from page 2315

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 2315

Za'ny. n.s. [Probably of zanei.] The contraction of Giovanni or sanna, a scoff, according to Skinner.] One employed to raise laughter by his gestures, actions and speeches; a merry Andrew; a buffoon.

Some carrytale, some pleaseman, some slight zany,
Some mumblenews, some trencher knight, some Dick,
Told our intents before.

Then write that I may follow, and so be
Thy echo, thy debtor, thy foil, thy zany,
I shall be thought, if mine like thine I shape,
All the world's lion, though I be thy ape.

Oh, great restorer of the good old stage,
Preacher at once, and zany of thy age.
Pope's Dunciad.

Sources: Donne, John (44) · Shakespeare's Love's Labours Lost (33) · Pope, Alexander (393) · Skinner, Stephen (55)

Attributes: Italian (29) · Latin (690) · Noun Substantive (1269)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Zany." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: December 20, 2013. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/zany/.

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