Merriam-Webster Word of the Day: Darling


The Merriam-Webster Word of the Day is darling. Read on for what it means, how it’s used, and more.

What It Means

A darling is “a dearly loved person” or “a person who is a favorite.”

// The youngest child is the grandparents’ little darling.

// The actor is a darling of the entertainment industry in both film and music.

DARLING in Context

“President Tyler met Juliana and David Gardiner later that year during a social occasion. Their daughter Julia became the undisputed darling of the capital.” — The News Leader (Clermont, Florida), 30 Mar. 2022

Did You Know?

Darling comes from Old English dēorling, which was formed by attaching the Old English suffix -ling (“one associated with or marked by a specified quality”) with the adjective dēore, the ancestor of our adjective dear (“regarded very affectionately or fondly,” “highly valued or esteemed,” “beloved”).

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