Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

dreary

play
adjective drea·ry \ˈdrir-ē\

Simple Definition of dreary

  • : causing unhappiness or sad feelings : not warm, cheerful, etc.

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of dreary

drearierdreariest

  1. 1 :  feeling, displaying, or reflecting listlessness or discouragement

  2. 2 :  having nothing likely to provide cheer, comfort, or interest :  gloomy, dismal

drearily play \ˈdrir-ə-lē\ adverb
dreariness play \ˈdrir-ē-nəs\ noun

Examples of dreary in a sentence

  1. It was a gray, dreary morning.

  2. The family struggled through dreary economic times.



Origin of dreary

Middle English drery, from Old English drēorig sad, bloody, from drēor gore; akin to Old High German trūrēn to be sad, Gothic driusan to fall


First Known Use: before 12th century

Synonym Discussion of dreary

dismal, dreary, bleak, gloomy, cheerless, desolate mean devoid of cheer or comfort. dismal indicates extreme and utterly depressing gloominess <dismal weather>. dreary, often interchangeable with dismal, emphasizes discouragement resulting from sustained dullness or futility <a dreary job>. bleak suggests chill, dull, and barren characteristics that utterly dishearten <the bleak years of the depression>. gloomy often suggests lack of hope or promise <gloomy war news>. cheerless stresses absence of anything cheering <a drab and cheerless office>. desolate adds an element of utter remoteness or lack of human contact to any already disheartening aspect <a desolate outpost>.

DREARY Defined for Kids

dreary

play
adjective drea·ry \ˈdrir-ē\

Definition of dreary for Students

drearierdreariest

  1. :  dull and depressing <a dreary, rainy Monday>

drearily \ˈdrir-ə-lē\ adverb
dreariness \ˈdrir-ē-nəs\ noun




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up dreary? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to defraud especially of money

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

angry maudlin prompt oily
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ