ca·​gey ˈkā-jē How to pronounce cagey (audio)
variants or less commonly cagy
cagier; cagiest
: hesitant about committing oneself
officials are cagey about giving out details
: wary of being trapped or deceived : shrewd
a cagey consumer
: marked by cleverness
a cagey reply
cagily adverb
caginess noun
or less commonly cageyness

Examples of cagey in a Sentence

a cagey old politician who is exceptionally skilled at getting federal money for his district when it came time to sign the contract, he suddenly got cagey about taking on the job
Recent Examples on the Web DeSantis has been extremely cagey when asked direct questions about his vaccination status. Chris Cillizza, CNN, 5 Jan. 2022 Biden and Clyburn have been longtime friends, but Clyburn stayed cagey in the days leading up to his endorsement announcement. David Jackson, USA TODAY, 26 Feb. 2020 The Schuyler sisters provide the most beautiful voices in the production, with Krystal Joy Brown offering a poignant Eliza, and Mandy Gonzalez a smart and cagey Angelica. Kyle Smith, National Review, 10 Feb. 2020 Cote and Mark were pretty cagey when asked if Michael will be back. Megan Stein, Country Living, 7 Jan. 2020 Quarterback Drew Lock looked like a cagey veteran and not a first-time NFL road starter, completing 22 of his 27 attempts for 309 yards and three touchdowns. Ryan O’Halloran, The Denver Post, 8 Dec. 2019 Mia is transformed from a cagey lone wolf into a woman with unlimited intense sympathy for another. Ariana Romero,, 18 Mar. 2020 Team director Ihab Lahita was cagey about his progress, saying there was no guarantee Salah will play in Egypt's Group A opener against Uruguay on Friday. Afp,, 13 June 2018 Shannon has always been cagey about how the fillets are prepared. Tim Carman, Washington Post, 27 Feb. 2020 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cagey.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


origin unknown

First Known Use

1876, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of cagey was in 1876

Dictionary Entries Near cagey

Cite this Entry

“Cagey.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


variants also cagy
cagier; cagiest
: very careful of not being trapped or deceived
a cagey buyer
cagily adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on cagey

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