The word "keen" is an adjective. Use it to describe a person or an animal with a strong ability to do something:

eagle an eagle

  • Eagles have a keen sense of sight.
  • Dogs have a keen sense of smell.
  • Albert Einstein had a keen mind. He was very smart.
  • A priest should have a keen understanding of the human spirit.
  • Mary Ann has a keen attraction to men who like to live life on the edge.*

Sometimes the word "keen" is used with "not" when a person isn’t happy with a situation:

  • Ifrah isn’t very keen about going to school.
  • Bill is not keen on delaying his retirement.
  • No one is keen about having to pay more in taxes.

*live life on the edge: do things that are adventurous, risky, or dangerous.

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Originally published on April 19, 2013. Updated on April 15, 2017.