\ ə-ˈdrȯit How to pronounce adroit (audio) \

Definition of adroit

: having or showing skill, cleverness, or resourcefulness in handling situations an adroit leader adroit maneuvers

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Other Words from adroit

adroitly adverb
adroitness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for adroit

clever, adroit, cunning, ingenious mean having or showing practical wit or skill in contriving. clever stresses physical or mental quickness, deftness, or great aptitude. a person clever with horses adroit often implies a skillful use of expedients to achieve one's purpose in spite of difficulties. an adroit negotiator cunning implies great skill in constructing or creating. a filmmaker cunning in his use of special effects ingenious suggests the power of inventing or discovering a new way of accomplishing something. an ingenious software engineer

dexterous, adroit, deft mean ready and skilled in physical movement. dexterous implies expertness with consequent facility and quickness in manipulation. unrolled the sleeping bag with a dexterous toss adroit implies dexterity but usually also stresses resourcefulness or artfulness or inventiveness. the magician's adroit response to the failure of her prop won applause deft emphasizes lightness, neatness, and sureness of touch or handling. a surgeon's deft manipulation of the scalpel

Examples of adroit in a Sentence

Rumor has always played a role in politics, but rarely have the backstage operatives been so adroit, and so cynical, in their use of vitriol. — Walter Shapiro, Time, 10 July 1989 He was adroit with money and was blessed with the extraordinary Spanish gift of prolific, and even inchoate, invention. — V. S. Pritchett, "Goya … ," 1975, in A Man of Letters1985 Family medicine … is constructed around the unquantifiable idea that a doctor who treats your grandmother, your father, your niece, and your daughter will be more adroit in treating you. — John McPhee, Table of Contents, 1984 She is adroit at handling problems. with an adroit flick of the wrist, flipped the omelet into the air and landed it squarely back in the pan
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Recent Examples on the Web Her camouflaging tactics are so adroit that the film’s denouement is both shocking and, somehow, deflating. Washington Post, "In 2020, women’s pandemic-era rage exploded on screen," 31 Dec. 2020 The writer-director John Patrick Shanley is the dramatist and screenwriter behind some wonderful and adroit and eccentric things. Michael Phillips,, "‘Wild Mountain Thyme’ review: Faith and begorrah, it’ll most likely bore ya," 9 Dec. 2020 Leigh's governess story is adroit in its handling of power dynamics, undoing any issues of consent or power as skillfully as her duke unbuttons a gown. Maureen Lee Lenker,, "Hot Stuff: November romances bring mischief, star-crossed lovers, and hot dukes," 4 Dec. 2020 Brands is an adroit storyteller and captures both Brown’s intensity and zeal and Lincoln’s pragmatism and wit. Barbara Spindel, The Christian Science Monitor, "Lincoln brought strength of character – and backwoods wit – to governing," 29 Oct. 2020 Now Kennedy is the subject of a new biography by Neal Gabler, the adroit chronicler of Walter Winchell, Walt Disney and other 20th-century American icons. Edward Kosner, WSJ, "‘Catching the Wind’ Review: The Liberal Lion in Full," 23 Oct. 2020 Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban may have been the most adroit at exploiting the health crisis. The Christian Science Monitor, "How leaders use emergency powers to target journalists, critics," 16 Apr. 2020 But despite its obvious vulnerabilities, Taiwan has managed, so far, to keep well ahead of the infectious curve through a combination of early response, pervasive screening, contact tracing, comprehensive testing, and the adroit use of technology. Andrew Leonard, Wired, "Taiwan Is Beating the Coronavirus. Can the US Do the Same?," 18 Mar. 2020 The hometown boy who graduated from Katy ISD decades before made a name for himself in the Dallas/Fort Worth region by his adroit handling of a crisis: cracks found in Allen’s new $60 million football stadium. Dallas News, "After the Allen ISD superintendent left to lead his hometown district, the wheels came off his career," 27 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'adroit.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of adroit

1652, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for adroit

borrowed from French, going back to Old French, "handsome, elegant, skilled (in combat)," from a-, prefix, perhaps with intensive value (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + droit "straight, direct, true, regular," going back to Latin directus "straight, direct" — more at dress entry 1

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Time Traveler for adroit

Time Traveler

The first known use of adroit was in 1652

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Last Updated

12 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Adroit.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for adroit


How to pronounce adroit (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of adroit

: very clever or skillful


\ ə-ˈdrȯit How to pronounce adroit (audio) \

Kids Definition of adroit

: having or showing great skill or cleverness an adroit leader

Other Words from adroit

adroitly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on adroit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for adroit

Nglish: Translation of adroit for Spanish Speakers

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