Word of the Day : February 9, 2022
What It Means
A yen is a strong desire, urge, or craving for something.
// After dinner, the family went out for ice cream to satisfy their yen for something sweet.
// Students with a yen to travel should consider studying abroad.
YEN in Context
“During the spring, retirees come south to New Hampshire for day trips, including shopping at outlets, while in summer the visitors are families with a yen for outdoor activities.” — John Koziol, The New Hampshire Union Leader, 14 Oct. 2021
Did You Know?
Although yen suggests no more than a strong desire these days (as in “a yen for a beach vacation”), at one time someone with a yen was in deep trouble: the first meaning of yen was an intense craving for opium. The word comes from Cantonese yīn-yáhn, a combination of yīn, meaning “opium,” and yáhn, “craving.” In English, the Chinese syllables were translated as yen-yen.