one of a class of medieval German poets who imitated the troubadours, 1825, from German minnesinger, from minne "love," especially "sexual love" (from Old High German minna "loving memory," originally "memory," from Proto-Germanic *minthjo, from PIE *menti-, suffixed form of root *men- (1) "to think") + singer (see singer). German minne by c. 1500 no longer was considered decent, and it became a taboo word until revived 18c. in poetic language. Compare meisitersinger. Related: Minnelied "love-song."
1540s, mynx "pet dog," later (1590s) "a young, pert, wanton girl" [Johnson], also "a lewd woman," a word of uncertain origin, perhaps a shortening of minikin "girl, woman," from Middle Dutch minnekijn "darling, beloved," from minne "love" (see minnesinger) + diminutive suffix -kijn (see -kin). Klein's sources suggest the word is from Low German minsk "a man," also "an impudent woman," related to German Mensch (see mensch), which in vulgar use also has a sense of "wench, hussy, slut."
c. 1500, "a favorite; a darling, one who or that which is beloved" (a sense now obsolete), from Old French mignon "a favorite, darling" (n.), also a term of (probably homosexual) abuse; as an adjective, "dainty, pleasing, favorite," from mignot "pretty, attractive, dainty, gracious, affectionate." The French word is of uncertain origin, perhaps from Celtic (compare Old Irish min "tender, soft"), or from Old High German minnja, minna "love, memory" (see minnesinger).
Used 16c.-17c. without disparaging overtones, but also from c. 1500 as "a favorite of a sovereign prince," especially "an intriguing favorite, a low or servile dependent." It also was used from 16c. for "a pert or saucy girl."
Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to think," with derivatives referring to qualities and states of mind or thought.
It forms all or part of: admonish; Ahura Mazda; ament; amentia; amnesia; amnesty; anamnesis; anamnestic; automatic; automaton; balletomane; comment; compos mentis; dement; demonstrate; Eumenides; idiomatic; maenad; -mancy; mandarin; mania; maniac; manic; mantic; mantis; mantra; memento; mens rea; mental; mention; mentor; mind; Minerva; minnesinger; mnemonic; Mnemosyne; money; monition; monitor; monster; monument; mosaic; Muse; museum; music; muster; premonition; reminiscence; reminiscent; summon.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit manas- "mind, spirit," matih "thought," munih "sage, seer;" Avestan manah- "mind, spirit;" Greek memona "I yearn," mania "madness," mantis "one who divines, prophet, seer;" Latin mens "mind, understanding, reason," memini "I remember," mentio "remembrance;" Lithuanian mintis "thought, idea," Old Church Slavonic mineti "to believe, think," Russian pamjat "memory;" Gothic gamunds, Old English gemynd "memory, remembrance; conscious mind, intellect."