stur·​dy | \ ˈstər-dē How to pronounce sturdy (audio) \
sturdier; sturdiest

Definition of sturdy

1a : firmly built or constituted : stout
b : hardy sturdy plants
c : sound in design or execution : substantial
2a : marked by or reflecting physical strength or vigor

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Other Words from sturdy

sturdily \ ˈstər-​də-​lē How to pronounce sturdily (audio) \ adverb
sturdiness \ ˈstər-​dē-​nəs How to pronounce sturdiness (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for sturdy

strong, stout, sturdy, stalwart, tough, tenacious mean showing power to resist or to endure. strong may imply power derived from muscular vigor, large size, structural soundness, intellectual or spiritual resources. strong arms the defense has a strong case stout suggests an ability to endure stress, pain, or hard use without giving way. stout hiking boots sturdy implies strength derived from vigorous growth, determination of spirit, solidity of construction. a sturdy table people of sturdy independence stalwart suggests an unshakable dependability. stalwart environmentalists tough implies great firmness and resiliency. a tough political opponent tenacious suggests strength in seizing, retaining, clinging to, or holding together. tenacious farmers clinging to an age-old way of life

Examples of sturdy in a Sentence

a dog with a strong sturdy build it took a sturdy person to endure the life of a pioneer
Recent Examples on the Web If the tree is sturdy and giving good production, pruning can be very limited. Tom Maccubbin,, "How and when to fertilize banana plantings," 10 Oct. 2020 This is a very sturdy bag with plenty of space, and also comes with Samsonite’s 10-year warranty. Julianne Ross, CNN Underscored, "The best carry-on suitcases of 2020," 9 Oct. 2020 Southlake Carroll has only played one football game this season, so perhaps its defense isn’t yet sturdy. Sean Collins, Dallas News, "Like in 2019 season, Rockwall-Heath is off to an explosive start. Is playoff spot in its future this time around?," 6 Oct. 2020 The branches aren’t as sturdy for heavy ornaments compared to more expensive trees, but at over 50 percent off, this may be one of the National Tree Company’s best options now available for under $100. Paige Szmodis, Popular Mechanics, "The 8 Best Artificial Christmas Trees to Brighten the Holidays," 15 Sep. 2020 The other 20 species studied had less sturdy hips, some of which are very thin and not well-connected to the spine. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "Study Finds Ten Species of Fish That May Have a Secret Talent for Walking on Land," 14 Sep. 2020 The over-all effect was of a desert palace, equal parts fortress and oasis, sturdy and serene. Dana Goodyear, The New Yorker, "The Iconoclast Remaking Los Angeles’s Most Important Museum," 5 Oct. 2020 Her musical gift — the only sturdy thing — provided a beacon of hope as family turmoil wrecked her childhood. Jon Caramanica, New York Times, "Mariah Carey, Elusive No More," 4 Oct. 2020 Sleek and sturdy, this desktop stand is compatible for the 2020 Mac Mini. Ellen Mcalpine, CNN Underscored, "Accessorize your Apple devices with our picks for best accessories of 2020," 14 Sep. 2020

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

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

History and Etymology for sturdy

Middle English, brave, stubborn, from Anglo-French esturdi stunned, from past participle of esturdir to stun, from Vulgar Latin *exturdire, from Latin ex- + Vulgar Latin *turdus simpleton, from Latin turdus thrush — more at thrush

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Time Traveler for sturdy

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for sturdy

Last Updated

21 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sturdy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for sturdy


How to pronounce sturdy (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sturdy

: strongly made
: strong and healthy
: having or showing mental or emotional strength


stur·​dy | \ ˈstər-dē How to pronounce sturdy (audio) \
sturdier; sturdiest

Kids Definition of sturdy

1 : firmly built or made The branch was sturdy enough to support his weight.
2 : strong and healthy in body : robust

Other Words from sturdy

sturdily \ ˈstər-​də-​lē \ adverb
sturdiness \ ˈstər-​dē-​nəs \ noun


stur·​dy | \ ˈstərd-ē How to pronounce sturdy (audio) \
plural sturdies

Medical Definition of sturdy

: gid

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