Caitiff definition

kātĭf
A despicable coward; a wretch.
noun
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A mean, evil, or cowardly person.
noun
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Despicable and cowardly.
adjective
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Evil, mean, or cowardly.
adjective
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A base or despicable person; a wretch.
noun
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(archaic) A villain, a coward or wretch.
noun
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Especially despicable; cowardly.
adjective
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
caitiff
Plural:
caitiffs

Origin of caitiff

  • Middle English caitif from Norman French from Latin captīvus prisoner captive

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Old French caitif (“captive”), a variant of chaitif (French chétif), from a Proto-Romance alteration of Latin captivus (“captive”); compare Italian cattivo (“bad, wicked”).

    From Wiktionary