This is the full read-only archive of the "Ask the Wordwizard" section of the original Wordwizard site. The responses to the questions originate from Jonathon Green, the compiler of the Cassell Dictionary of Slang and numerous other dictionaries.
Philander/philanderer copmes from Greek philandros, loving or fond of men, (of a woman) loving her husband, itself from philo-, loving and aneir, man, male, husband; hence it became used as a proper name in story, drama, dialogue; in later use especially for a lover (perhaps misunderstood as = a loving man).Post actions:
Signature: Jonathon Green
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