Definition of cloying
: disgusting or distasteful by reason of excess cloying sweetness; also : excessively sweet or sentimental a cloying romantic comedy Her coyness grows cloying after a while … — Elysa Gardner
cloying was our Word of the Day on 04/06/2017. Hear the podcast!
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
Examples of cloying in a Sentence
After a while, the softness of his voice becomes cloying.
the cloying sentiments of so many Mother's Day cards
Recent Examples of cloying from the Web
With that, the Democrat best known for playing the cloying self-help guru Stuart Smalley became a United States Senator.
Plot holes became more apparent the longer the show went on, and its melodramatic tropes became cloying and tiresome the more they were repeated.
The bourbon pecan pie was a rich, gooey wedge that avoided being too cloying.
Guests, desperate to get out of the cloying heat wave stifling London, eagerly entered the cool, marble hallway of the imposing neo-classical palace, originally built for the first Earl Spencer, an ancestor of Princess Diana.
The skin is green and the flesh is intense and complex in flavor, with a melon character and a cloying sweetness.
This meant poking through the shaved ice with an oversize straw to the point that stirring was possible, then mixing everything up, yielding a pleasing, non-cloying sweetness.
A lesser actor could easily have made the lad insufferable, but Lieberher brings a disarming poise to his work that somehow makes the kid endearing yet not cloying.
Once upon a disco, Italian sparkling reds were as cloying as an Abba single.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cloying'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Can one desire too much of a good thing? asks Rosalind in William Shakespeare's play As You Like It. "Cloying" suggests that you can, because it implies a repugnant excess of something that might be pleasing in smaller doses. An exploration into the history of "cloying," however, leads us eventually to roots that are neither sweet nor excessive, but rather tough as nails. Cloying derives from the verb "cloy," which now means "to supply or indulge to excess," but which once meant "to clog" and earlier "to prick a horse with a nail in shoeing." "Cloy" itself traces via Middle English to Anglo-French encloer (which also meant "to prick a horse with a nail in shoeing") and ultimately to the Latin clavus, meaning "nail."
CLOYING Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of cloying for English Language Learners
: too sweet, pleasant, or emotional
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up cloying? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).