en·​vi·​ous | \ ˈen-vē-əs How to pronounce envious (audio) \

Definition of envious

1 : feeling or showing envy envious of their neighbor's new car envious looks

2 archaic

a : emulous
b : enviable

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from envious

enviously adverb
enviousness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for envious


covetous, green-eyed, invidious, jaundiced, jealous, resentful



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of envious in a Sentence

a family that is envious of their neighbors' big house

Recent Examples on the Web

But in addition to their many positive traits, they're also perceived as less bold, less talkative, and more envious than their older and younger siblings, according to a Stanford study cited in Schumann's book. Charlotte Hilton Andersen, Redbook, "Is The Middle Child Syndrome a Myth or Do Parents Need To Take It Seriously?," 7 Aug. 2017 The singer escaped the rainy West Coast to celebrate her best friend's bachelorette party this week and returned to Los Angles with a seriously envious, just-back-from-vacation glow. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "Selena Gomez Steps Out With a Just-Back-From-Vacation Glow in Los Angeles," 14 Feb. 2019 Real Madrid and Paris St.-Germain did not used to look toward its manager with envious eyes; they did not used to talk glowingly of Tim Sherwood in the marble halls of the Bernabéu. Rory Smith, New York Times, "Pochettino Has Mastered the Process. A Prize, Any Prize, Still Eludes Him.," 21 Apr. 2018 All five of us girls grew up envious of the privileges the boys had. Caterina Clerici & Eléonore Hamelin, Marie Claire, "Rwanda's Future Is Female," 1 Feb. 2019 With many families pinched for space, an uninhabited bedroom could become a place for work, exercise, relaxation or guests, or maybe a bigger room for a long-envious little sibling. Lisa A. Flam, Fox News, "Kid leaving for college? Hands off their bedroom, for now," 28 Aug. 2018 For lawn geeks like him, the attractions also include spending time outdoors and meeting their (often envious) neighbors. James R. Hagerty, WSJ, "Plucking Blades by Hand, Vacuuming the Grass: This Is Extreme Lawn Care," 15 July 2018 That time of the year where we are all mesmerized by or envious of the naked bodies that athletes flaunt in ESPN The Magazine’s annual Body issue. Eduardo Gonzalez, latimes.com, "Galaxy's Ibrahimovic and Dodgers' Puig will be featured in this year's ESPN The Magazine's Body issue. Here's a sneak peek," 21 June 2018 Middles, by contrast, are characterized primarily as envious and are perceived as especially deficient in attributes related to confidence. Adam Sternbergh, The Cut, "The Extinction of the Middle Child," 11 July 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of envious

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about envious

Dictionary Entries near envious

Enver Paşa







Statistics for envious

Last Updated

1 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for envious

The first known use of envious was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for envious



English Language Learners Definition of envious

: feeling or showing a desire to have what someone else has : feeling or showing envy


en·​vi·​ous | \ ˈen-vē-əs How to pronounce envious (audio) \

Kids Definition of envious

: feeling or showing unhappiness over someone else's good fortune and a desire to have the same

Other Words from envious

enviously adverb

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on envious

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for envious

Spanish Central: Translation of envious

Nglish: Translation of envious for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of envious for Arabic Speakers

Comments on envious

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


one that collects or salvages junk

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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