"to smile in an affected and silly way," 1560s, perhaps from a Scandinavian source (compare dialectal Danish semper "affected, coy, prudish") or Middle Dutch zimperlijk "affected, coy, prim," all of unknown origin. Related: Simpered; simpering. As a noun, "an affected smile," 1590s, from the verb.
updated on October 29, 2022
Dictionary entries near simper