1490, from Middle French mignon ("lover, royal favourite, darling"), from Old French mignon ("dainty, pleasing, gentle, kind"), from Frankish *minnjo ("love, friendship, affection, memory"), from Proto-Germanic *minþij?, *mindij? ("affectionate thought, care"), from Proto-Indo-European *men- ("to think").
minion (countable and uncountable, plural minions)
- A loyal servant of another, usually a more powerful being.
2013 May-June, Kevin Heng, "Why Does Nature Form Exoplanets Easily?", in American Scientist, volume 101, number 3, page 184:
- In the past two years, NASA's Kepler Space Telescope has located nearly 3,000 exoplanet candidates ranging from sub-Earth-sized minions to gas giants that dwarf our own Jupiter.
The archvillain deployed his minions to simultaneously rob every bank in the city.
- A sycophantic follower.
- (obsolete) A loved one; one highly esteemed and favoured.
- God's disciple and his dearest minion
- William Shakespeare, Timon of Athens, IV-III
- Is this the Athenian minion whom the world / Voiced so regardfully?
- (obsolete) An ancient form of ordnance with a calibre of about three inches.
1647, Francis Beaumont, Philip Massinger, The Double Marriage (play), published 1717, page 19:
- Gun. My Cannons rung like Bells. Here's to my Mistress, The dainty sweet brass Minion: split their Fore-mast, She never fail'd.
- (uncountable, typography, printing) The size of type between nonpareil and brevier, standardized as 7-point.
- Obsolete form of minimum.
- Robert Burton
- Of philosophers and scholars priscae sapientiae dictatores, I have already spoken in general terms, those superintendents of wit and learning, men above men, those refined men, minions of the muses,
loyal servant of another more powerful being
minion (comparative more minion, superlative most minion)
- (obsolete) Favoured, beloved; "pet".
- , vol.1, p.148:
- These favours, with the commodities that follow minion Courtiers, corrupt [...] his libertie, and dazle his judgement.
Borrowed from English million.
- (cardinal) million