lack·​a·​dai·​si·​cal | \ ˌla-kə-ˈdā-zi-kəl How to pronounce lackadaisical (audio) \

Definition of lackadaisical

: lacking life, spirit, or zest : languid teachers who are impatient with lackadaisical students

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Other Words from lackadaisical

lackadaisically \ ˌla-​kə-​ˈdā-​zi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce lackadaisically (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for lackadaisical

languid, languorous, lackadaisical, listless, spiritless mean lacking energy or enthusiasm. languid refers to an unwillingness or inability to exert oneself due to fatigue or physical weakness. was depressed and languid for weeks after surgery languorous suggests a dreamy boredom and delicacy that avoids unnecessary activity. languorous cats lying in the sun lackadaisical implies a carefree indifference marked by half-hearted efforts. lackadaisical college seniors pretending to study listless suggests a lack of interest caused by physical weakness or dissatisfied boredom. listless hospital patients listless children flipping through picture books on a rainy day spiritless refers to a lack of animation or vigor that gives one's actions and words life. a spiritless recital of the poem

Where does lackadaisical come from?

Alas, alack, there are times when life seems to be one unfortunate occurrence after another. We’ve all had days when nothing seemed to go right. When folks had one of those days back in the 17th century, they'd cry "Lackaday" to express their sorrow and disappointment. Lackaday was a shortened form of the expression "alack the day." In the mid-1700s, lackadaisical was coined through addition of the suffix -ical. The word lackadaisy also was used around that time as an interjection similar to lackaday, and this word, though never as prevalent as lackaday, might have influenced the coinage of lackadaisical.

Examples of lackadaisical in a Sentence

His teachers did not approve of his lackadaisical approach to homework. feeling particularly lackadaisical in the summer heat, they lazily tossed a ball back and forth
Recent Examples on the Web Called out publicly by coach Kelly Graves for lackadaisical performances amid a 10-1 nonconference slate, the No. James Crepea | The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "Sabrina Ionescu, Ruthy Hebard each with 21 as No. 2 Oregon women’s basketball routs Colorado," 4 Jan. 2020 Southgate has some big decisions to make ahead of Monday evening's clash, as the 49-year-old was left enormously frustrated by his side's lackadaisical performance against Bulgaria., "Bulgaria vs England Preview: Where to Watch, Live Stream, Kick Off Time & Team News," 13 Oct. 2019 After the 2017 attack, Mr. Trump criticized Mr. Khan for what the president falsely claimed was the mayor’s lackadaisical response. Mark Landler, New York Times, "Stabbings Around London Bridge Kill 2 in ‘Terrorist Incident’," 29 Nov. 2019 The Celtics hope their inconsistent and lackadaisical days were nothing but a phase affected by injuries. Gary Washburn,, "Revived Celtics face daunting road trip," 23 Jan. 2020 Previously, the show had presented the former King Edward VIII as a selfish fool, whose abdication thrust the unprepared King George VI and his family into the spotlight, a lackadaisical socialite, and a treasonous Nazi supporter. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Inside Prince Charles's Relationship with the Duke of Windsor," 23 Nov. 2019 After Auburn staked its largest lead of the night at 45 points, the Tigers got a little lackadaisical against the Raiders, who went on a 21-5 run to cut Auburn’s lead to 29 points with 7:42 to play. Tom Green |, al, "Instant analysis: Samir Doughty, No. 19 Auburn throttle Colgate, remain undefeated," 19 Nov. 2019 Canadian news media outlets reported that he had once asked forward Mitch Marner, then a 19-year-old rookie, to rank his teammates from hardest working to most lackadaisical and then shared the list with the team. Andrew Knoll, New York Times, "N.H.L. Takeaways: 3 Moves That Reflect a Cultural Shift in the Sport," 3 Dec. 2019 The audit goes back as far as 1999 to shed light on the origins of the Registry’s lackadaisical approach to processing notices., "For at least 20 years, the Registry of Motor Vehicles has failed to stay on top of alerts from other states about Massachusetts residents who broke their traffic laws, creating a massive backlog that allowed an untold number of drivers to skirt potential sanctions and remain on the road.," 5 Oct. 2019

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

1768, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for lackadaisical

irregular from lackaday + -ical

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Time Traveler for lackadaisical

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The first known use of lackadaisical was in 1768

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Last Updated

24 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Lackadaisical.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for lackadaisical


How to pronounce lackadaisical (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of lackadaisical

: feeling or showing a lack of interest or enthusiasm

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Spanish Central: Translation of lackadaisical

Nglish: Translation of lackadaisical for Spanish Speakers

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