fin·​icky | \ ˈfi-ni-kē How to pronounce finicky (audio) \

Definition of finicky

1 : extremely or excessively particular, exacting, or meticulous in taste or standards a finicky eater My teacher is finicky about spelling.
2 : requiring much care, precision, or attentive effort a finicky recipe … growing the finicky Pinot Noir grape …— Kim Marcus

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Other Words from finicky

finickiness noun

Did You Know?

You may be familiar with an advertising campaign featuring Morris, the "finicky" housecat who would only eat a certain brand of cat food. Morris’s tastes in cuisine are not only very particular, but very fine as well, and that’s appropriate given the origin of "finicky." The word came about as an alteration of "finicking," itself an alteration of another adjective, "finical." It’s believed that finical derives from the adjective "fine." "Finicking" also gives us "finick," a somewhat rare verb meaning "to put on airs" or "to dawdle about."

Examples of finicky in a Sentence

My teacher is finicky about grammar. a complicated and finicky recipe

Recent Examples on the Web

First off, there’s no unwieldy equipment to wrangle, no finicky sauce to emulsify, and no must-serve-immediately mandate to follow. Jesse Sparks, Bon Appétit, "I'm Defffinitely Not Chill, But These Cold Miso Noodles Are," 23 Aug. 2019 The new laptop would also feature slightly faster processors, and hopefully a reprieve from the terribly finicky keyboards Apple has been putting in laptops since 2015 which have been the impetus for a class-action lawsuit. Mike Murphy, Quartz, "Apple’s big September event will be about a lot more than new iPhones," 6 Sep. 2019 Sharks are expensive to maintain and surprisingly finicky about water conditions. Candace Taylor, WSJ, "Home Shark Tanks Are In. Just One Problem: Sharks Make Terrible Pets," 29 July 2018 But the surf of New York can be notoriously finicky. Nick Corasaniti, New York Times, "Steeped in Hawaiian History, Longboarding Rides an Instagram Wave," 10 Sep. 2019 Historically, the results have been displacement or finicky land contracts. Allie Gross, Detroit Free Press, "Lawsuits take aim at Wayne County's controversial Action Before Auction program," 3 Sep. 2019 That’s difficult because qubits are finicky and have the propensity to stop functioning at the slightest disturbance, such as a minor change in temperature. Jeanne Whalen, Washington Post, "The quantum revolution is coming, and Chinese scientists are at the forefront," 18 Aug. 2019 Who knows, maybe there will be some newfangled primer that actually works for our finicky skin types or an innovative mascara that truly checks off every box on our lash criteria. Allure, "All the Best New Makeup Launching in August," 1 Aug. 2019 Then, the researchers compared the proteins expressed in antennae from bees with good hive hygiene with those in the antennae of less finicky bees. Erik Stokstad, Science | AAAS, "Breeders toughen up bees to resist deadly mites," 25 July 2019

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

circa 1825, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for finicky

alteration of finicking

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Statistics for finicky

Last Updated

12 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for finicky

The first known use of finicky was circa 1825

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More Definitions for finicky



English Language Learners Definition of finicky

: very hard to please
: requiring a lot of care or attention


fin·​icky | \ ˈfi-ni-kē How to pronounce finicky (audio) \

Kids Definition of finicky

: very hard to please : fussy

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More from Merriam-Webster on finicky

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for finicky

Spanish Central: Translation of finicky

Nglish: Translation of finicky for Spanish Speakers

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