\ˈstə-fē \
stuffier; stuffiest

Definition of stuffy 

2 : lacking in vitality or interest : stodgy, dull

3a : oppressive to the breathing : close a stuffy room

b : stuffed up a stuffy nose

4a : narrowly inflexible in standards of conduct : self-righteous

b : stiffly conventional : priggish stuffy formalities

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Other Words from stuffy

stuffily \ ˈstə-​fə-​lē \ adverb
stuffiness \ ˈstə-​fē-​nəs \ noun

Examples of stuffy in a Sentence

It's very stuffy in here. She had a stuffy nose. I had a stuffy feeling in my head. the stuffiest members of that exclusive club
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Recent Examples on the Web

Just a few hours later, more readings begin, proving that this literary festival is anything but stuffy. Kristin Braswell, Vogue, "This Literary Festival in Jamaica Is the Island’s Best-Kept Secret," 12 June 2018 Yet even this space manages to feel anything but stuffy, with a funky black-and-white rug by IKEA and light fixture from Globe Electric. Rachel Swalin, ELLE Decor, "Office Envy: Foodstirs' Modern Office Design In LA Is Not Your Average Workspace," 10 Mar. 2017 Best Buy If things are feeling a little stuffy, a Dyson Air Purifier might be just the ticket to a fresher room. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Today's Best Deals: Things Won't Break in a Pelican Case," 30 Apr. 2018 Coffee helped me to think outside the stuffy confines of my long-familiar box. Aimee Levitt, Chicago Reader, "Archive Dive / Food & Drink How Kevin Warwick learned to stop worrying and cultivate a coffee addiction, just like the rest of us," 7 Mar. 2018 The outgoing former Philadelphia mayor with a larger-than-life persona smashed the state’s campaign fundraising records and went from the rough-and-tumble world of Philadelphia politics to the relatively stuffy state Capitol. Washington Post, "Rendell, ex-Pennsylvania governor, says he has Parkinson’s," 18 June 2018 The result: Get-togethers that manage to be both elaborate and understated—and never stuffy or contrived. Rachel Waldman, Vogue, "How LoveShackFancy’s Rebecca Hessel Cohen Readies Her Hamptons Home For Summer Entertaining," 23 May 2018 Though the result can sometimes be stuffy or overdone, the feathery, artsy design of Jonathan Adler’s Drip Wallpaper ensures the look is just-right. Stephanie Granada, Sunset, "10 Wallpaper Styles That Will Wake up Your Living Room," 22 Jan. 2018 There was an extra seat for a neighbor who lived in a stuffy third-floor apartment. Jacques Kelly,, "Remembering Baltimore's magical glow from gaslights on a summer night," 14 July 2018

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

1798, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near stuffy

stuff oneself


stuff shot





Statistics for stuffy

Last Updated

2 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stuffy

The first known use of stuffy was in 1798

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More Definitions for stuffy



English Language Learners Definition of stuffy

: lacking fresh air

: filled with mucus because of illness

: very formal, serious, or old-fashioned


\ˈstə-fē \
stuffier; stuffiest

Kids Definition of stuffy

1 : needing fresh air a stuffy room

2 : stuffed or blocked up a stuffy nose

3 : very formal and self-important He's a stuffy old teacher.


\ˈstəf-ē \
stuffier; stuffiest

Medical Definition of stuffy 

: affected with congestion a stuffy nose

Other Words from stuffy

stuffiness \ ˈstəf-​ē-​nəs \ noun

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Comments on stuffy

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


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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