mea·​sly | \ ˈmēz-lē How to pronounce measly (audio) , ˈmē-zə-\
measlier; measliest

Definition of measly

1 : infected with measles
2a : containing larval tapeworms
b : infested with trichinae
3 : contemptibly small

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Examples of measly in a Sentence

She complained about being given such a measly raise. All I want is a few measly minutes of your time.

Recent Examples on the Web

Think of it this way: One whole orange is about 60 calories and 15 grams sugar; one serving of orange juice (a measly half cup, or 4 ounces) is about the same. Jaclyn London, Ms, Rd, Cdn, Good Housekeeping, "Is Jamba Juice Healthy? Smoothie Fans Might Not Like the Answer," 29 Aug. 2018 Fortnite is making its way to Android, but not until Samsung device owners get a stab at it first... for a measly couple of days. Makena Kelly, The Verge, "Samsung’s Fortnite exclusive will expire before the Note 9 even launches," 9 Aug. 2018 The median annual wage for creatives in the Miami metro area is a relatively measly $54,000, a far cry from the $97,000 creatives earn in the U.S. innovation capital of Silicon Valley. Andres Viglucci, miamiherald, "Miami wants to be a creative hub. Here’s what might keep that from happening.," 2 Feb. 2018 Billions of dollars are funneled to owners of capital in the form of dividends and stock buybacks, while laborers go begging for even the measliest wage increases. Michael Hiltzik,, "Employers will do almost anything to find workers to fill jobs — except pay them more," 10 July 2018 Plus, Streaks is a lot less annoying than stroking your phone screen repeatedly for eight seconds for one measly life. Makena Kelly, The Verge, "HQ rewards you for still playing the game with extra lives for participating daily," 5 July 2018 And Texas had mustered just one measly road win in five attempts. Nick Moyle, San Antonio Express-News, "Texas began its Super Regional run after early-season loss to Arkansas," 4 June 2018 Social media seems to have decided that the Rams stole an all-pro corner from the Chiefs at a measly price. Albert Breer,, "NFL Draft Quarterback Class: The Holes, the Hype and How the Combine Performances Will Factor," 1 Mar. 2018 Humans have only been around for a measly 200,000 years. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Volcanoes are awe-inspiring. Here are 7 things to know about them.," 11 May 2018

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

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for measly

The first known use of measly was in 1598

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More Definitions for measly



English Language Learners Definition of measly

informal + disapproving : very small or too small in size or amount


mea·​sly | \ ˈmēz-lē How to pronounce measly (audio) \
measlier; measliest

Kids Definition of measly

: so small or unimportant as to be rejected with scorn They left a measly tip for the waiter.


mea·​sly | \ ˈmēz-(ə-)lē How to pronounce measly (audio) \
measlier; measliest

Medical Definition of measly

1 : infected with measles
2a : containing larval tapeworms
b : infected with trichinae

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More from Merriam-Webster on measly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for measly

Spanish Central: Translation of measly

Nglish: Translation of measly for Spanish Speakers

Comments on measly

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


to speak slightingly about or to degrade

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