cat·​ty | \ ˈka-tē How to pronounce catty (audio) \
plural catties

Definition of catty

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: any of various units of weight of China and southeast Asia varying around 1¹/₃ pounds (about 600 grams) also : a standard Chinese unit equal to 1.1023 pounds (500 grams)


cattier; cattiest

Definition of catty (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : resembling a cat especially : slyly spiteful : malicious made several catty comments
2 : of or relating to a cat

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Other Words from catty


cattily \ ˈka-​tə-​lē How to pronounce cattily (audio) \ adverb
cattiness \ ˈka-​tē-​nəs How to pronounce cattiness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for catty

Synonyms: Adjective

bad [slang], bitchy, cruel, despiteful, hateful, malevolent, malicious, malign, malignant, mean, nasty, spiteful, vicious, virulent

Antonyms: Adjective

benevolent, benign, benignant, loving, unmalicious

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Examples of catty in a Sentence


a catty remark that served its only purpose: to make someone cry

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

To help flesh out the story, creators Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss weave some catty comments and hilariously anachronistic references into their delicious lyrics and between-song dialogue. Terry Byrne,, "Bow to the queens of ART’s scintillating ‘Six”," 26 Aug. 2019 Key Tower is the tallest skyscraper between New York and Chicago; its upper tip overtops the tip of the 771-foot-tall Terminal Tower, catty-corner on Public Square, by 176 feet according to the Skyscraper Center website. Steven Litt,, "Remembering architect Cesar Pelli’s big contributions to Cleveland: An appreciation - Steven Litt," 28 July 2019 The shadow of mortality is never very far away, even when the action shifts to the lowbrow humor of the flatulent warthog Pumbaa (voice of Seth Rogen) and his catty sidekick, Timon the meerkat (Billy Eichner). Michael O'sullivan, Twin Cities, "‘The Lion King’ feels way more like ‘Hamlet’ this time — and that’s why it’s so good," 18 July 2019 Lupita Nyong'o and Winston Duke star as the protective parents and Elizabeth Moss has a delicious supporting role as a catty best friend and her gleefully sadistic double. Sean Axmaker | Stream,, "Home viewing this week: ‘Us,’ ‘City on a Hill,’ ‘Das Boot’ (2018), ‘Hotel Mumbai,’ ‘Beats’," 21 June 2019 Matt Minnicino’s adaptation takes a playful, even risque approach with the verse as a catty set of upper-crusters gossip and gripe in the South of France. Nelson Pressley, Washington Post, "‘A Misanthrope’ brings Molière’s fabulous fakes into the 21st century," 5 June 2019 Worn with romantic earrings, a black choker, fishnet tights, and catty little ankle boots, Buoso’s ensemble was one of the show’s closing looks, a spritely offering among Moralioglu’s sweeping gowns and long floral trains. Amanda Brooks, Vogue, "From Sketch to Dress: How Erdem Revived an Italian Principessa in Custom Fil Coupé," 26 Feb. 2019 What can come from that, unfortunately, is a catty girl-fight narrative completely fabricated by social media. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "Jenna Dewan Responded to People Who Say She Looks Just Like Jessie J," 15 Nov. 2018 There’s plenty of catty people in the fashion business. Emma Elwick-bates, WSJ, "Grace Coddington Collaborates on a Pet-Inspired Capsule Collection for Louis Vuitton," 20 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'catty.' 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 catty


1598, in the meaning defined above


1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for catty


Malay kati

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Statistics for catty

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Time Traveler for catty

The first known use of catty was in 1598

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More Definitions for catty



English Language Learners Definition of catty

disapproving : unkind or critical

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More from Merriam-Webster on catty

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with catty

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for catty

Spanish Central: Translation of catty

Nglish: Translation of catty for Spanish Speakers

Comments on catty

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suitable to be imparted to the public

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