nasty

adjective
nas·ty | \ ˈna-stē \
nastier; nastiest

Definition of nasty 

1a : disgustingly filthy nasty living conditions

b : physically repugnant a nasty taste

2 : indecent, obscene nasty language

3 : mean, tawdry living a cheap and nasty life —G. B. Shaw

4a : extremely hazardous (see hazardous sense 2) or harmful a nasty undertow

b : causing severe pain or suffering a nasty wound a nasty fall

c : sharply unpleasant : disagreeable nasty weather

5a : difficult to understand or deal with a nasty problem a nasty curveball

b : psychologically unsettling : trying a nasty fear that she was lost

6 : lacking in courtesy or sportsmanship a nasty trick

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Other words from nasty

nastily \ˈna-stə-lē \ adverb
nastiness \ˈna-stē-nəs \ noun
nasty noun

Choose the Right Synonym for nasty

dirty, filthy, foul, nasty, squalid mean conspicuously unclean or impure. dirty emphasizes the presence of dirt more than an emotional reaction to it. a dirty littered street filthy carries a strong suggestion of offensiveness and typically of gradually accumulated dirt that begrimes and besmears. a stained greasy floor, utterly filthy foul implies extreme offensiveness and an accumulation of what is rotten or stinking. a foul-smelling open sewer nasty applies to what is actually foul or is repugnant to one expecting freshness, cleanliness, or sweetness. it's a nasty job to clean up after a sick cat In practice, nasty is often weakened to the point of being no more than a synonym of unpleasant or disagreeable. had a nasty fall his answer gave her a nasty shock squalid adds to the idea of dirtiness and filth that of slovenly neglect. squalid slums All these terms are also applicable to moral uncleanness or baseness or obscenity. dirty then stresses meanness or despicableness don't ask me to do your dirty work , while filthy and foul describe disgusting obscenity or loathsome behavior filthy street language a foul story of lust and greed , and nasty implies a peculiarly offensive unpleasantness. a stand-up comedian known for nasty humor Distinctively, squalid implies sordidness as well as baseness and dirtiness. engaged in a series of squalid affairs

Examples of nasty in a Sentence

She has a nasty habit of biting her fingernails. The medicine left a nasty taste in my mouth. That nasty old man yelled at me just for stepping on his lawn! He sent a nasty letter to the company. She's got quite a nasty temper. He said lots of downright nasty things about her. She called him a few nasty names and left.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Last month the fashion brand came under fire after designer Stefano Gabbana made a nasty and unprovoked comment about Selena Gomez on Instagram. Colleen Kratofil, PEOPLE.com, "Ashley Graham, Naomi Campbell Criticized for Walking Dolce & Gabbana Show After Selena Gomez Diss," 9 July 2018 In one influential speech, a Hutu politician compared Rwanda’s Tutsi population to a particularly nasty insect. Sarah Jones, The New Republic, "Why Tyrants Dehumanize the Powerless," 20 June 2018 There has always been a nasty strain of racialized hatred towards LeBron. Jason Johnson, The Root, "LeBron James Is Finally Free From Cleveland and It Couldn’t have Happened to a Nicer City," 9 June 2018 Things got so nasty that the chairman of the California Democratic Party intervened to broker a truce. Maeve Reston, CNN, "California's 'top two' primary election tussle," 31 May 2018 The race to be Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas is getting downright nasty ahead of the governing party of this state's convention coming up in just a couple weeks. Scott Braddock, Houston Chronicle, "Censure of Speaker Straus a major flashpoint in race to lead the Republican Party of Texas," 31 May 2018 In Indy's thrilling 3-3 draw over the Charleston Battery on Wednesday at Lucas Oil Stadium, Saad duplicated the feat, hitting another screamer perhaps even nastier than the first. Kevin Johnston, Indianapolis Star, "Despite a thrilling goal, Indy Eleven settle for a draw," 30 May 2018 By contrast, there’s a reason California top two primaries are getting increasingly nasty. Lee Drutman, Vox, "California could avoid the chaos of the “top two” primary with ranked-choice voting," 29 May 2018 The excessive precaution from the agency is in part due to the particularly nasty strain of E. coli behind the outbreak, which began felling greens-eaters in mid-March. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Massive E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce turns deadly," 3 May 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for nasty

Middle English

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More Definitions for nasty

nasty

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of nasty

: very unpleasant to see, smell, taste, etc.

: indecent and offensive

: unpleasant and unkind

nasty

adjective
nas·ty | \ ˈna-stē \
nastier; nastiest

Kids Definition of nasty

1 : mean entry 2 sense 1 He has a nasty disposition.

2 : very unpleasant nasty weather a nasty taste

3 : very serious : harmful I had a nasty fall on the ice.

4 : very dirty : filthy

5 : indecent nasty jokes

Other words from nasty

nastily \ˈna-stə-lē \ adverb
nastiness \ˈna-stē-nəs \ noun

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Comments on nasty

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occurring twice a year or every two years

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