mid-15c., from Middle French pensée "a pansy," literally "thought, remembrance," from fem. past participle of penser "to think," from Latin pensare "consider," frequentative of pendere "to hang, cause to hang; weigh; pay" (from PIE root *(s)pen- "to draw, stretch, spin"). So called because it was regarded as a symbol of thought or remembrance. Meaning "effeminate homosexual man" is first recorded 1929.
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