\ 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 And there was a take on Rorschach’s joke, this time delivered by Laurie Blake (a steely, playful Jean Smart), an FBI agent tasked with investigating Judd’s death. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, "Watchmen Questions Its Heroes’ Legacies," 4 Nov. 2019 And already, we've been introduced to a smorgasbord of new characters, from veteran Cassidy and young father Malik to Rebecca's steely (and scary) parents. Jenny Hollander, Marie Claire, "The Best 'This Is Us' Fan Theories for Season 4," 30 Sep. 2019 Emerging from the back of the stage in a white unitard and an enormous black skirt billowing from the floor to the ceiling is the steely and precise Ms. Mearns, the eventual captor of Mr. Ulbricht’s comically limp and apathetic Sigh. New York Times, "New York City Ballet Is Back, and the Real Jewels Are the Dancers," 19 Sep. 2019 Its small greens and their impressive fortification demands deft iron play, a fierce putter, and a steely resolve. Dieter Kurtenbach, The Mercury News, "Kurtenbach: Why is the U.S. Open not played at Pebble Beach more often?," 16 June 2019 Seeing the open compassion of Maeve’s Shogun World counterpart, Akane, a similarly steely mother hen, helped underline just how different Maeve’s awakening has been compared to Dolores. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Westworld: A Cut Above," 20 May 2018 That’s another reason why Murray will need to hang tight with his steely resolve. Jarrett Bell, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Arizona Cardinals rookie QB Kyler Murray an NFL X-factor with lofty expectations," 1 Sep. 2019 As a star 6-foot-6 forward at Riverside King High in 2008, Kawhi Leonard possessed skillet-sized hands, a 7-foot wingspan and a steely demeanor. Andrew Greif,, "Kawhi Leonard’s recruitment was a slow process like his free-agency decision," 4 July 2019 Between them stands Instagram superstar Dan Bilzerian in a button-down shirt, showing off a thick beard, biceps, and a steely gaze. Jenni Avins, Quartzy, "An avatar of toxic masculinity is starting a men’s grooming line," 2 July 2019

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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Statistics for steely

Last Updated

13 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for steely

The first known use of steely was in 1509

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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

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More from Merriam-Webster on steely

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for steely

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with steely

Spanish Central: Translation of steely

Nglish: Translation of steely for Spanish Speakers

Comments on steely

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


to engage in dissolute behavior

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