Home  »  Roget’s International Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases  »  862. [Excess of Fear.] Cowardice.

Mawson, C.O.S., ed. (1870–1938). Roget’s International Thesaurus. 1922.

Class VI. Words Relating to the Sentient and Moral Powers
Section II. Personal Affections
3. Prospective Affections

862. [Excess of Fear.] Cowardice.

   NOUN:COWARDICE, pusillanimity; cowardliness &c. adj.; timidity, effeminacy.
  poltroonery, baseness, dastardness, dastardy, abject fear, funk [colloq.]; Dutch courage [colloq.]; fear [See Fear]; white feather, faint heart; cold feet [slang, U. S.], yellow streak [slang].
  COWARD, poltroon, dastard, sneak, recreant; shy -, dunghill- cock; coistrel or coistrill [archaic], milksop, white-liver [colloq.], nidget [obs.], one that cannot say “Bo” to a goose; slink [Scot. & dial. Eng.], cur [contemptuous], craven, caitiff; Bob Acres, Jerry Sneak.
  ALARMIST, terrorist, pessimist; sheep in wolf’s clothing.
  SHIRKER, slacker; runagate (fugitive) [See Avoidance].
   VERB:QUAIL (fear) [See Fear]; be cowardly &c. adj., be a coward &c. n.; funk [colloq.], cower, skulk, sneak; flinch, shy, fight shy, slink, turn tail; run away (avoid) [See Avoidance]; show the white feather.
   ADJECTIVE:COWARDLY, coward, fearful, shy, timid, timorous, skittish; poor-spirited, spiritless, soft, effeminate; weak-minded; infirm of purpose [See Irresolution]; weak-, faint-, chicken-, hen-, pigeon- hearted; white-, lily-, milk- livered; smock-faced; unable to say “Bo” to a goose.
  DASTARD, dastardly, base, craven, sneaking, dunghill, recreant; unwarlike, unsoldierlike; “in face a lion but in heart a deer”; “more like a rabbit than a robber.”
  UNMANNED; frightened [See Fear].
   ADVERB:with fear and trembling, in fear of one’s life, in a blue funk [colloq.]; “with groanings that cannot be uttered” [Bible].
   INTERJECTION:sauve qui peut! [F.], devil take the hindmost!    QUOTATIONS:
  1. Ante tubam trepidat.
  2. One’s courage oozing out.
  3. Degeneres animos timor arguit.—Vergil
  4. Thou wear a lion’s hide! doff it for shame, And hang a calf’s skin on those recreant limbs.—King John
  5. The coward stands aside, Doubting in his abject spirit, till his Lord is crucified.—Lowell