familiar form of proper name Daniel. The words to the popular song "Danny Boy" were written by English songwriter Frederic Weatherly in 1910 and altered in 1913 to fit the old Irish tune of "Londonderry Air."
name of the boy-hero in J.M. Barrie's play "Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up" (1904), first introduced in Barrie's "The Little White Bird" (1902). Used allusively for an immature adult man from 1914 (by G.B. Shaw, in reference to the Kaiser).
Well, Peter Pan got out by the window, which had no bars. Standing on the ledge he could see trees far away, which were doubtless the Kensington Gardens, and the moment he saw them he entirely forgot that he was now a little boy in a nightgown, and away he flew, right over the houses to the Gardens. It is wonderful that he could fly without wings, but the place itched tremendously, and, perhaps we could all fly if we were as dead-confident-sure of our capacity to do it as was bold Peter Pan that evening. [Barrie, "The Little White Bird"]
masc. proper name, from Latin Maximus and Aemilianus, both proper names. According to Camden, Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493) coined the name and gave it to his son in hopes the boy would grow up to have the virtues of Fabius Maximus and Scipio Aemilianus.
in various usages, from the gentle boy hero of Frances Hodgson Burnett's popular novel "Little Lord Fauntleroy" (1885). The family name is recorded from mid-13c., literally "son of the king" (Anglo-French Le Enfant le Roy), from faunt, a Middle English variant of enfaunt (see infant). Middle English had also fauntekin "a little child" (late 14c.).
"person of Mexican heritage in the U.S.," 1947, from Mexican Spanish dialectal pronunciation of Mexicano "Mexican," with loss of initial unaccented syllable [Barnhart]. Said to have been in use among Mexican-Americans from c. 1911. Probably influenced by Spanish chico "boy," which also is used as a nickname. The adjective in English is attested by 1967. Fem. form is Chicana.
in Greek mythology, Castor and Polydeuces (Pollux), warrior-gods and tutelary protectors of sailors, twin sons of Zeus and Leda; a Latinized form of Greek Dioskouroi, literally "Zeus' boys," from Dios, genitive of Zeus (see Zeus) + kouroi, plural of kouros "boy, son," from PIE *korwo- "growing" (hence "adolescent"), from suffixed form of root *ker- (2) "to grow." Related: Dioscuric; Dioscurian.
surname, from early 16c., earlier Cocks (c. 1300), in many cases from cock (n.1), which apparently was used as a personal name in Old English, also a familiar term for a boy, later used of apprentices, servants, etc. Perhaps in some cases for the sign of an inn, and in some cases perhaps from cook (n.), or Welsh coch "red."
named for 17c. Irish-born chemist and physicist Robert Boyle, who published it in 1662.