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minx (n.)

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."

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