shad·owy | \ ˈsha-dō-ē , -də-wē \

Definition of shadowy 

1a : of the nature of or resembling a shadow

b : faintly perceptible : indistinct

2 : being in or obscured by shadow deep shadowy interiors

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Other words from shadowy

shadowily \ˈsha-də-wə-lē \ adverb
shadowiness \ˈsha-də-wē-nəs \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for shadowy


shaded, shadowed, shady


exposed, shadeless, sunny

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Examples of shadowy in a Sentence

She was pursued by a shadowy figure. He had only a shadowy idea of what they wanted him to do.

Recent Examples on the Web

To prove that point, Sten (Johannes Kuhnke), the apparent head of the shadowy Apollon company that kicked off the rain apocalypse, reveals his plans to bunch of mysterious, obvious ne'er do wells. Ariana Romero,, "This Is The Most Important Part Of The Rain's Ending," 8 May 2018 The show shrewdly spotlights the real risk of hacking, which isn’t always about shadowy agents in a basement. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "5 Space Forces From Sci-Fi and What We Can Learn From Them," 6 July 2018 The new rules are meant to illuminate the sometimes shadowy world of politics on social media and help prevent fraud and abuse by organizations like Russia’s Internet Research Agency. Kevin Roose, New York Times, "A Day Care and a Dog Rescue Benefit: On Facebook, They Were Political Ads," 21 June 2018 When Nan’s son Pat grows too close to the shadowy Uncle Pang, an act of violence rocks everyone involved with the restaurant. Emily Gray Tedrowe, USA TODAY, "Family drama is on the menu in spicy "Number One Chinese Restaurant"," 18 June 2018 From the start, Ditko seemed to be drawn to noirish artists who filled the page with black ink to capture the shadowy underworld. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Steve Ditko, the co-creator of Spider-Man and Doctor Strange, is dead.," 7 July 2018 This is a quote from the book: 'In 2012, Fusion GPS, was hired to do opposition research on Mitt Romney for Barack Obama's re-election campaign that had become standard practice in the shadowy world of oppo research. Fox News, "Former target of Putin reacts to UK nerve agent attack," 14 Mar. 2018 The bag, in this case, is lethally sensitive data and all the rich, shadowy, violent people who’d like to keep their secrets. Steph Cha, USA TODAY, "Smart women get caught up in deadly intrigue in page-turning 'The Banker's Wife'," 2 July 2018 There are a few striking scenic moments, such as when a shadowy forest begins to collapse on itself. Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, "Review: A Conductor Sets Munich’s Ashen ‘Parsifal’ Aflame," 1 July 2018

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

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

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Statistics for shadowy

Last Updated

17 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shadowy

The first known use of shadowy was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for shadowy



English Language Learners Definition of shadowy

: full of shade or shadows

: dark and mysterious

: not clearly seen or understood


shad·owy | \ ˈsha-də-wē \

Kids Definition of shadowy

1 : full of shade a shadowy lane

2 : indistinct Occasionally, they would pass the shadowy figure of someone else walking down the stairs … —Lemony Snicket, The Ersatz Elevator

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More from Merriam-Webster on shadowy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for shadowy

Spanish Central: Translation of shadowy

Nglish: Translation of shadowy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shadowy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on shadowy

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