1 a: having a fine edge or point: sharp. b: affecting one as if by cutting <keen sarcasm>. c: pungent to the sense. <a keen scent>.
2 a: (1) showing a quick and ardent responsiveness <a keen swimmer>. (2) eager; b of emotion or feeling: intense.
3 a: intellectually alert: having or characteristic of a quick penetrating mind; also: shrewdly astute. b: sharply contested <a keen debate>. c: extremely sensitive in perception.
4: Wonderful, excellent.
– Keenly, adverb.
– Keenness, noun.
– Keen on: very enthusiastic or excited about.
[Origin: Middle English kene brave, sharp, from Old English cēne brave; akin to Old High German kuoni brave.]
“Daniel is a very keen fellow, and it is why I sent him to Duncarlin – he has gone before, and hates the errand, for the castle and its inhabitants oppress him, and he feels unclean when he has been there.” – The Wicked, Douglas Nicholas.
Am I the only one who remembers Neato keen?
*I am aware of the meanings ascribed in the 1800s. My book choice is set in the early Medieval period, and that’s the definition I am concerned with.