cat·​ty | \ˈka-tē \
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 \ adverb
cattiness \ ˈka-​tē-​nəs \ 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

The storylines of Cavallari’s employees and their catty friends figure to take predictable paths as the season unfolds. David Haugh,, "Jay Cutler, the King of Not Caring, still rules on 'Very Cavallari'," 9 July 2018 When Bourdain got really catty about two of his fellow TV food show hosts. Andy Staples,, "Joe Moorhead’s Goal Isn’t Just to Win at Mississippi State. It’s to Win Championships.," 11 June 2018 Federer was catty in defeat, ripping Djokovic for the desperate shot as if the impulsivity was beneath him. Chris Chase, For The Win, "Was Roger Federer's Wimbledon collapse the worst of his career? Ranking his five biggest losses.," 11 July 2018 All three shows are big on female bonding and friendship while blasting the myth that women are always catty and are way too busy sharpening their talons to give a sister a hand. Karla Peterson,, "Meet the heroines of this summer's Must-See #MeToo TV," 29 June 2018 The property purchased by Jefferson Bank’s executives is catty-corner from where local credit union Credit Human is building a 10-story, $112.5 million headquarters with the help of an $8.8 million incentive package from the city and county. Richard Webner, San Antonio Express-News, "Jefferson Bank executives buy nearly entire block on Broadway near Pearl," 28 June 2018 Gossip Girl, Big Little Lies, even The Real Housewives franchise: All these shows zero in on the catty behavior among its protagonists, who are, by and large, women. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "The Bold Type Is TV's Best Depiction of Female Friendship," 12 June 2018 Co-produced by stars Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman, HBO's high-pedigree miniseries initially looked like a delicious combo of catty suburban satire and brutal murder mystery. Emma Dibdin, Harper's BAZAAR, "The 20 Best TV Shows Of 2017," 29 Dec. 2017 We’re not just catty accessories to beautiful women who have messy lives., "The Evolution Of LGBTQ+ Representation On This Black Reality Show," 11 June 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

: unkind or critical

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Comments on catty

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


full of whispering sounds

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