ambidextrous

play
adjective am·bi·dex·trous \ˌam-bi-ˈdek-strəs\

Definition of ambidextrous

  1. 1a :  using both hands with equal ease or dexterity an ambidextrous pitcher Guatelli says the master was ambidextrous, that he sketched with his right hand while he wrote with his left—simultaneously. — John P. Wiley Jr.b soccer :  using both feet with equal ease :  two-footed When Zinger played the Ghosts in the regular season, he kicked with his right foot. This time, the ambidextrous soccer player went with his left. — Lianne Elliott

  2. 2 :  designed or suitable for use by the left or right hand With two firing buttons, it's the first ambidextrous joystick—just as comfortable for lefties as righties. — Popular Computing

  3. 3 :  unusually skillful :  versatile He is completely ambidextrous, that is to say, completely able to express himself in verse or prose — T. S. Eliot :  characterized by duplicity :  double-dealing He was unordained, uneducated, and theologically so ambidextrous that he could be either Lutheran or Reformed as the situation required. — G. H. Genzmer

ambidextrously

adverb

ambidextrous was our Word of the Day on 04/02/2013. Hear the podcast!

Recent Examples of ambidextrous from the Web

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

Did You Know?

Latin dexter originally meant "related to or situated on the right side," but since most people do things better with the right hand, "dexter" developed the sense of "skillful" (as demonstrated by our word dexterous). In 1646, English physician and author Sir Thomas Browne combined "dexter" with the Latin prefix ambi- (meaning "both") in the first documented use of "ambidextrous": "Some are . . . ambidextrous or right-handed on both sides." The word can now describe the kind of physical or mental agility demonstrated by one with multiple diverse talents.

Origin and Etymology of ambidextrous

Late Latin ambidexter, from Latin ambi- + dexter right-hand — more at dexter


AMBIDEXTROUS Defined for Kids

ambidextrous

play
adjective am·bi·dex·trous \ˌam-bi-ˈdek-strəs\

Definition of ambidextrous for Students

  1. :  using both hands with equal ease an ambidextrous basketball player

ambidextrously

adverb

Medical Dictionary

ambidextrous

play
adjective am·bi·dex·trous \ˌam-bi-ˈdek-strəs\

Medical Definition of ambidextrous

  1. :  capable of using both hands with equal ease

ambidextrously

adverb

Learn More about ambidextrous


Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

to bring about or cause (something)

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Emoji Quiz

  • emoji-the-quiz
  • What phase of the moon is this: 🌖 ?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!