\ˈfə-sē \
fussier; fussiest

Definition of fussy 

1 : easily upset : irritable

2 : overly decorative a fussy wallpaper pattern

3a : requiring or giving close attention to details fussy bookkeeping procedures

b : revealing a sometimes extreme concern for niceties : fastidious, picky

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Other Words from fussy

fussily \ ˈfə-​sə-​lē \ adverb
fussiness \ ˈfə-​sē-​nəs \ noun

Examples of fussy in a Sentence

I'm not fussy about where we eat. The room was cluttered and fussy.

Recent Examples on the Web

The $875 Harman Kardon surround sound provided excellent tuneage, but the equalizer is a little too fussy and inside-baseball for on-the-road use. Scott Sturgis, Philly.com, "BMW X3 gets a redesign for 2018," 28 June 2018 When everything was mixed together, the batter needed to rest for 15 minutes, which further confirmed my impression that baking is too fussy and needs to get over itself. Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, "Baking the Royal Wedding Cake Is the Biggest Commitment I’ve Ever Made," 18 May 2018 The free app ChatterBaby, which was released last month, analyzes the acoustic features of a baby's cry, to help parents understand whether their child might be hungry, fussy or in pain. CBS News, "ChatterBaby app could help parents figure out why their baby is crying," 28 June 2018 Think of this lip balm as summer's retort to the fussy, high-maintenance liquid lipstick of winters past. Deanna Pai, Glamour, "Nars Has a New Orgasm Lip Balm—and Oh, It's Good," 16 May 2018 Guardiola divides the pitch into twenty zones—were not just a fussy distraction but could produce soccer that was both attractive and effective. Leo Robson, The New Yorker, "How We Watch Soccer Now," 5 Dec. 2016 His young parents, scraping their living from a small tobacco farm, couldn’t cope with a fussy baby. Longreads, "The Bungled Bank Robbery That Ended in a Landmark Legal Ruling," 26 June 2018 But then Sherando’s kicker graduated, and the team couldn’t be fussy. Michael Farber, SI.com, "Mark Moseley, Last of the Straight-On Kickers," 2 July 2018 The country’s fussy monetary policy also reflects competing influences. The Economist, "Turkey’s central bank has streamlined its fight against inflation," 31 May 2018

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

1831, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near fussy


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Statistics for fussy

Last Updated

28 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fussy

The first known use of fussy was in 1831

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More Definitions for fussy



English Language Learners Definition of fussy

: very careful or too careful about choosing or accepting things : hard to please

: often upset or unhappy

: too fancy or complicated


\ˈfə-sē \
fussier; fussiest

Kids Definition of fussy

1 : inclined to complain or whine a fussy child

2 : hard to please His cat is fussy about food.

3 : overly decorated and complicated … that bed … is as enormous and fussy as mine.— E. L. Konigsburg, Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

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