My lovely old Dad was what I would have described as a debonair gentleman – but did you know that the word we now use in english, old fashioned though it may be, originated from the French for ‘of good air

In the Middle Ages, people’s health was judged to a large degree by how they smelled. A person who gave off ‘good air’ was presumed healthier and happier.

When first borrowed from the French in the 13th century, debonair was used to describe somebody who was courteous, genteel and well-brought-up.

Later, it evolved more into the idea of someone, usually male, who was considered to be charming, confident,  and carefree.

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