\ ˈī-sē How to pronounce icy (audio) \
icier; iciest

Definition of icy

1a : covered with, abounding in, or consisting of ice
b : intensely cold
2 : characterized by coldness : frigid an icy stare also : steely icy nerves

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Other Words from icy

icily \ ˈī-​sə-​lē How to pronounce icily (audio) \ adverb
iciness \ ˈī-​sē-​nəs How to pronounce iciness (audio) \ noun

Examples of icy in a Sentence

an icy drink that was especially refreshing on that hot afternoon she wondered why the salesclerk at the boutique had given her an icy glare

Recent Examples on the Web

Everyone seems to agree on one fact: That a ship really did sink in the icy waters of the North Atlantic on April 15, 1912, and approximately 1,500 passengers aboard that ship died. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "The Wild Conspiracy That the Titanic Never Sank," 27 Feb. 2019 Ships that regularly sail in icy waters must be ice-hardened or winterized, to withstand the pounding and stress of thick ice and cold temperatures. Ben Kesling, WSJ, "Cold War Games: U.S. Is Preparing to Test the Waters in Icy Arctic," 11 Jan. 2019 Imagine plunging yourself into the icy, frigid waters of the Arctic with nothing but a one-piece swimsuit, a tight-fitting swim cap, and the rush of your own adrenaline for warmth. Condé Nast Traveler, "Women Who Travel Podcast: A Record-Setting Swimmer on Seeing the World by Water," 20 Aug. 2018 No one expects an oil shortage yet, as long as the barges that bring the fuel to Boston can still navigate the icy waters of Massachusetts Bay. Jon Chesto And Katheleen Conti, BostonGlobe.com, "Prolonged cold snap upends region’s energy market," 27 June 2018 The Emmy-winning documentary series portrays the real-life events aboard fishing vessels in the perilous, icy waters of the Bering Sea, depicting how crab fishing in Alaska is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. Aurelie Corinthios, PEOPLE.com, "Remembering the Late Deadliest Catch Stars, from Phil Harris to Blake Painter," 30 May 2018 Passengers can sit inside out of the cold and view the icy glacial waters or just find a private area to read, nap or socialize. Rosemary Mcclure, latimes.com, "Norwegian Cruise Line sends a really big ship to L.A., and there may be more to come," 30 May 2018 Hundreds more perished, going down with the ship or freezing to death in the icy water. Amy B Wang, Washington Post, "Why you’ve never heard of the six Chinese men who survived the Titanic," 19 Apr. 2018 Possibly containing over a trillion icy bodies, no spacecraft have ever been sent to investigate. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Voyager 2 Enters Interstellar Space," 10 Dec. 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Dictionary Entries near icy





icy cold



Statistics for icy

Last Updated

19 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for icy

The first known use of icy was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for icy



English Language Learners Definition of icy

: covered with ice
: very cold
: not friendly or kind


\ ˈī-sē How to pronounce icy (audio) \
icier; iciest

Kids Definition of icy

1 : covered with, full of, or being ice icy roads
2 : very cold an icy wind
3 : unfriendly sense 1 an icy look

Other Words from icy

icily \ ˈī-​sə-​lē \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on icy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with icy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for icy

Spanish Central: Translation of icy

Nglish: Translation of icy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of icy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on icy

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


to move or proceed with twists and turns

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