Simple Definition of fusty
: full of dust and unpleasant smells : not fresh
: very old-fashioned
Examples of fusty in a sentence
The trunk was full of fusty clothing.
<couldn't stay too long in the fusty attic without sneezing>
Did You Know?
Fusty probably derives from the Middle English word foist, meaning "wine cask," which in turn traces to the Medieval Latin word fustis, meaning "tree trunk" or "wood." So how did fusty end up meaning "old-fashioned"? Originally, it described wine that had gotten stale from sitting in the cask for too long; fusty literally meant that the wine had the "taste of the cask." Eventually any stale food, especially damp or moldy food, was called "fusty." Those damp and moldy connotations were later applied to musty places, and later still to anything that had lost its freshness and interest-that is, to anything old-fashioned.
Origin of fusty
probably alteration of Middle English foisted, foist musty, from foist wine cask, from Anglo-French fust, fuist wood, tree trunk, cask, from Medieval Latin fustis
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of fusty
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