Posted by ESC on December 19, 2003

In Reply to: Smitten posted by arcain on December 19, 2003

: What does "smitten" mean and where did it come from?

Merriam-Webster online at

See No. 5:

Main Entry: smite
Pronunciation: 'smIt
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): smote /'smOt/; smit.ten /'smi-t&n/; or smote; /'smI-ti[ng]/
Etymology: Middle English, from Old English smItan to smear, defile; akin to Old High German bismIzan to defile
Date: 12th century
transitive senses
1 : to strike sharply or heavily especially with the hand or an implement held in the hand
2 a : to kill or severely injure by smiting b : to attack or afflict suddenly and injuriously. Smitten by disease.
3 : to cause to strike
4 : to affect as if by striking: Children smitten with the fear of hell -- V. L. Parrington.
5 : CAPTIVATE, TAKE: Smitten with her beauty.
intransitive senses : to deliver or deal a blow with or as if with the hand or something held
- /'smI-t&r/ noun