puckish • \PUCK-ish\ • adjective
: impish, whimsical
Ellen found Gabe's puckish antics quite appealing when they first started dating, but now she wishes he would be more serious.
Did you know?
We know Puck as "that merry wanderer of the night," the shape-changing, maiden-frightening, mischief-sowing henchman to the king of the fairies in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. The Bard drew on English folklore in casting his character, but the traditional Puck was more malicious than the Shakespearean imp; he was an evil spirit or demon. In medieval England, this nasty hobgoblin was known as the "puke" or "pouke," names related to the Old Norse "puki," meaning "devil." But it was the Bard's characterization that stuck, and by the time the adjective "puckish" started appearing regularly in English texts in the late 1800s the association was one of impishness, not evil.