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

thorny

play
adjective, \ˈthȯr-nē\

Simple Definition of thorny

  • : having a lot of thorns

  • : very difficult or complicated

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of thorny

thornierthorniest

  1. 1 :  full of thorns

  2. 2 :  full of difficulties or controversial points :  ticklish <a thorny problem>

thorniness noun

Examples of thorny in a sentence

  1. <stay out of the thorny brambles unless you want a ton of scratches>



Before 12th Century

First Known Use of thorny

before 12th century

Rhymes with thorny


THORNY Defined for Kids

thorny

play
adjective \ˈthȯr-nē\

Definition of thorny for Students

thornierthorniest

  1. 1 :  full of or covered with thorns

  2. 2 :  full of difficulties <a thorny situation>





Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a timid, meek, or unassertive person

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alt-5746713d76276

Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

reduce perplex soothe disapprove
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