\ ˈnō-zē How to pronounce nosy (audio) \
variants: or nosey
nosier; nosiest

Definition of nosy

: of prying or inquisitive (see inquisitive sense 2) disposition or quality : intrusive nosy reporters nosy neighbors

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Other Words from nosy

nosily \ ˈnō-​zə-​lē How to pronounce nosily (audio) \ adverb
nosiness \ ˈnō-​zē-​nəs How to pronounce nosiness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for nosy


curious, inquisitive, prying, snoopy


incurious, uncurious

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Examples of nosy in a Sentence

nosy in-laws asking about our finances a nosy coworker sat down right next to us as we were having an unmistakably private conversation

Recent Examples on the Web

For all of the nosy curious minds out there, Ant's ex-wife is Louise Anstead. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "So Who Was Ant Anstead Married to Before Meeting Christina Anstead?," 10 June 2019 In Season 1, a Greek chorus of nosy parents and snide school administrators guided our attentions. Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, "“Big Little Lies” Season 2, Reviewed: Meryl, Meryl, Meryl," 9 June 2019 The Meddler As the title suggests, this is about a nosy mom (Susan Sarandon) who meddles in the life of her struggling daughter (Rose Byrne). Seventeen, "20 Mother's Day Movies to Watch With Your Mom," 11 Apr. 2019 Thankfully, Sophie seems to have the most ingenious response to the nosy photographers—and that's to take pictures of them right back. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Sophie Turner Just Clapped Back at Nosy Paparazzi in the Most Brilliant Way," 27 Mar. 2019 One of the most effective ways to get a nosy reporter to drop a story is to offer something better. Ben Widdicombe, Town & Country, "How Much Does It Cost to Keep Your Name Out of the News?," 18 Jan. 2019 And Trump, for his part, doesn’t want reporters asking nosy questions. Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "The Week in Washington: In Trump’s White House, It’s 1984," 29 July 2018 The foursome becomes a bickering, Gatorade-drinking Scooby gang out to solve the murders while also dealing with other townsfolk, including Mila’s crush (who's also Riley’s big brother), a nosy school newspaper reporter and a pack of biker ladies. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "Four hot novels for teens to dive into this summer vacation," 3 July 2018 For celebrities, this crowd is their fans and nosy journalists (hi!). Rebecca Farley,, "The Sorcery Of A Secret Celebrity Wedding In 2018," 29 June 2018

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

1828, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for nosy

nose entry 1

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Statistics for nosy

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for nosy

The first known use of nosy was in 1828

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More Definitions for nosy



English Language Learners Definition of nosy

informal + disapproving : wanting to know about other people's lives, problems, etc.


variants: or nosey \ ˈnō-​zē \
nosier; nosiest

Kids Definition of nosy

: wanting to know about someone else's business nosy neighbors

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More from Merriam-Webster on nosy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for nosy

Spanish Central: Translation of nosy

Nglish: Translation of nosy for Spanish Speakers

Comments on nosy

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


to form ideas or theories about something

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