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Definition: a man who carries an extramarital sexual affair with a woman he does not intent to marry, or- a man involved in many love affairs with a casual attitude.

Pronunciation: fi-LAN-der


The Greek philo, meaning love, is core to this word; andr, the stem of aner means- a man, thus the original philanders were just- loving people as the Greek adjective philandros means just that- with love to people. Around the 1700s, Philander was widely used as a name for that classic lover in stories, novels and dramas and cane to represent the meaning of “lover” by 1737.

Why this word?

Why this word? Really? Would you have ever believed there is an actual proper term referring to a guy who sleeps around with no need in commitment or relationships? The word is so specific that its definition includes various manly intentions. It’s amazing. What’s even more amazing- is that this word cannot be used for women. It can only be used for men. Moreover- there is no word similar to this one in sense that can be used to describe a woman.

Philandress? Why not? It’s almost 2014 for crying out loud!

I think that if you start it- it can actually happen! Next time you encounter a sexually liberated woman, just say “I admire that philandress”. True, you’d have to explain (but you’d also have to explain when using philander…)

How to use the word philander in a sentence?

“Being the only single man in town, and a philander as he is, all the single ladies are eager to have some of his attention!”

And please- try to find philandress a use!


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Written by Victoria Sheinkin

Victoria Sheinkin is a writer, content editor, translator and chief editor for Speaking three and a half languages, she holds two BAs from the Tel Aviv university- Communication and jounalism, English literature and linguistics.


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