shod·​dy | \ ˈshä-dē How to pronounce shoddy (audio) \

Definition of shoddy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a reclaimed wool from materials that are not felted that is of better quality and longer staple than mungo
b : a fabric often of inferior quality manufactured wholly or partly from reclaimed wool
2a : inferior, imitative, or pretentious articles or matter
b : pretentious vulgarity


shoddier; shoddiest

Definition of shoddy (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : made wholly or partly of shoddy
2a : cheaply imitative : vulgarly pretentious shoddy merchandise
b : hastily or poorly done : inferior shoddy workmanship
c : shabby, disreputable shoddy business deals

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Other Words from shoddy


shoddily \ ˈshä-​də-​lē How to pronounce shoddily (audio) \ adverb
shoddiness \ ˈshä-​dē-​nəs How to pronounce shoddiness (audio) \ noun

Examples of shoddy in a Sentence

Adjective They gave a shoddy performance. shoddy merchandise that soon fell to pieces
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Recycled pop bottles are made into carpets and seat linings, and cotton shoddy—used to make blue jeans—is recycled and turned into sound insulation. Katherine Lagrave, Condé Nast Traveler, "What the Road Trip Looks Like in 2030," 20 July 2018 That never quite offset his shoddy blocking, unfortunately, which cost him playing time last season. Andy Benoit,, "True NFL Draft Grades: 2014 Draft, Four Years Later," 8 May 2018 Coby Fleener is too unreliable as a receiver to offset his shoddy blocking. Andy Benoit,, "NFL Draft Needs: All 32 Teams," 25 Apr. 2018 Only traditional organic feeds such as the shoddy are allowed Craig Ballinger, Slate Magazine, "The Dark State of British Rhubarb," 20 Mar. 2017 In her motion for exoneration, filed in Wyandotte County District Court in June 2016, Pilate laid out a story of false arrest, conviction and imprisonment involving a shoddy and corrupted police investigation as well as prosecutorial misconduct. Eric Adler,, "Falsely imprisoned for 23 years? Court to hear evidence on freeing Lamonte McIntyre," 26 Apr. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The Trump administration’s shoddy response to Hurricane Maria parallels the Bush administration’s response to Hurricane Katrina as a reminder of what can befall nonwhite Americans who live at the periphery of our national attention. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "Our Frightening Moment Was Years in the Making," 8 Jan. 2020 The couple is alleging that Windy City Rehab hosts Alison Gramenos (who also goes by Alison Victoria) and Donovan Eckhardt are guilty of breach of contract, breach of warranty, defective and shoddy work, and consumer fraud. Kelly Corbett, House Beautiful, "A Chicago Couple Is Suing the 'Windy City Rehab' Hosts For Consumer Fraud and "Shoddy" Work," 7 Jan. 2020 In time, perhaps Sunday's shoddy performance could be dismissed. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: Offseason QB speculation will offer defense reprieve it didn't earn," 30 Dec. 2019 And that Lincoln-worthy memorial looks shoddy compared with how the Marvel Cinematic Universe mourned Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man. Darren Franich,, "2019 was the year that everything ended in pop culture," 29 Dec. 2019 Antonio Morales of The Athletic: Undisciplined defense and shoddy special teams hamstring USC in the Holiday Bowl, and that has to change. oregonlive, "There isn’t much big-game buzz for this Oregon-Wisconsin Rose Bowl: Issues & Answers," 28 Dec. 2019 The company controls 21 properties in San Antonio and has been accused of failing to make repairs and engaging in shoddy accounting. Marina Starleaf Riker,, "‘We can do a lot more’ — City, community leaders call for efforts to prevent eviction," 22 Dec. 2019 Republicans on the committee castigated the FBI over its investigation into the Trump campaign, declaring that such a shoddy case should never be pursued again. Anchorage Daily News, "Inspector general says Barr’s handpicked prosecutor failed to convince him FBI was wrong to open Trump campaign probe," 11 Dec. 2019 The foldable phones also still have major caveats—not because of shoddy design or inattention to detail, but because any brand new technology will need to iterate and get better. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Pablo Escobar's Brother Made a Folding Phone for Some Reason," 3 Dec. 2019

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


1832, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1847, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for shoddy


origin unknown

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Time Traveler for shoddy

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The first known use of shoddy was in 1832

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Cite this Entry

“Shoddy.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 January 2020.

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More Definitions for shoddy



English Language Learners Definition of shoddy

: poorly done or made


shod·​dy | \ ˈshä-dē How to pronounce shoddy (audio) \
shoddier; shoddiest

Kids Definition of shoddy

: poorly done or made shoddy work

Other Words from shoddy

shoddiness \ ˈshä-​dē-​nəs \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on shoddy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for shoddy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shoddy

Spanish Central: Translation of shoddy

Nglish: Translation of shoddy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shoddy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on shoddy

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


good-natured easy friendliness

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