\ ˈstē-lē How to pronounce steely (audio) \
steelier; steeliest

Definition of steely

1 : resembling or suggesting steel (as in hardness, color, strength, or coldness) steely determination steely blue
2 : made of steel

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Other Words from steely

steeliness noun

Examples of steely in a Sentence

a thief with steely nerves He had a steely determination to succeed. She gave him a steely gaze. a sky filled with steely gray clouds the judge's steely blue eyes
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Recent Examples on the Web His sleigh is powered not by reindeers, but three steely horses. Madeline Roache, Time, "How Soviet Russia Banished Their Version of Santa Claus, Then Brought Him Back to Spread Communist Cheer," 24 Dec. 2020 This top-level example from Austria is both succulent and steely, ripe and juicy, fruity and mineral. Elin Mccoy,, "The 50 Best Wines Under $50," 7 Dec. 2020 Hewitt turned around and gave Williams a steely glare and replied. Mike Bianchi,, "Jaguars need to hire legendary Tony Boselli as new GM | Commentary," 2 Dec. 2020 But no one in the show shines more than Kidman’s steely baby blues, which quickly become a character of their own. Bethonie Butler, Washington Post, "The real star of ‘The Undoing’? Nicole Kidman’s eyeballs.," 30 Nov. 2020 Obama has inherited from it a belief that the darkness within the American soul can be conquered with the projection of steely reserve. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "Barack Obama Doesn’t Have the Answers," 19 Nov. 2020 Equal parts steely and maternal, the duality of her persona is explored throughout the season. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Gillian Anderson on Playing The Crown’s Iron Lady," 16 Nov. 2020 There’s always been a steely, sinister edge to Connery’s screen presence, a hint of sadism beneath all his beauty, wit and physical grace. Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times, "Remembering Sean Connery: Our critics discuss his finest roles and that infamous Playboy interview," 31 Oct. 2020 Sean Connery, the Scottish actor who was catapulted to superstar status after playing the suave but steely secret agent James Bond, died. James Hookway, WSJ, "Sean Connery, the Original James Bond Who Transcended the Role of 007, Has Died at 90," 31 Oct. 2020

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

1509, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for steely

Time Traveler

The first known use of steely was in 1509

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Statistics for steely

Last Updated

11 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Steely.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for steely


How to pronounce steely (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of steely

: very strong and determined often in a cold or unfriendly way
: resembling steel especially in color


\ ˈstē-lē How to pronounce steely (audio) \
steelier; steeliest

Kids Definition of steely

: like steel (as in hardness, strength, or color) steely eyes

More from Merriam-Webster on steely

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for steely

Nglish: Translation of steely for Spanish Speakers

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