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Twee

Twee means something cloyingly precious, dainty, sweet, quaint, tiny or pretty. It carries the connotation of something affected or self-consciously too precious. Twee is primarily a British English word, through it is gaining ground in North America. The word twee comes from a simple back-formation from the word tweet, an imitation of a child pronouncing the word sweet. Currently, the earliest known  use of the word twee was in 1905 in Punch magazine, a satirical British weekly.


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Examples

“It could go into saccharine territory and be a bit twee maybe but the thing that cuts that is it look so beautiful and just as you are thinking ‘ahhh’ somebody shouts ‘arsehole’ in Greek. (The MIrror)

Loosening the reins: The Pony Club rebrands for the first time in 87 years in a bid to shake off its twee and tweed image (The Daily Mail)

Now I must really like Kelly because I keep doing that twee hand-over-the-mouth giggle at her jokes. (The Evening Standard)

As for The Good Dinosaur … it has its critical admirers, but I found it desperately disappointing, unoriginal and twee, exactly the kind of creative cul-de-sac that we’d been afraid of before IO. (The Guardian)

Clark McGinn, author of the rival The Ultimate Burns Supper Book, said: “Pippa Middleton’s twee view of four people round a table winding up the evening playing a game of cards with a whisky pushes my ‘it’s up to you’ belief when it comes to Burns Suppers to its limits.” (The Telegraph)

But through the doors of this rather twee, unimposing property is where Wales’s most famous son, the poet Dylan Thomas was born. (The Daily Express)

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