touchy

adjective
\ˈtə-chē \
touchier; touchiest

Definition of touchy 

1 : marked by readiness to take offense on slight provocation he's a little touchy about his past

2 : calling for tact, care, or caution in treatment a touchy subject

3a of a body part : acutely sensitive or irritable

b of a chemical : highly explosive or inflammable

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Other Words from touchy

touchily \ˈtə-chə-lē \ adverb
touchiness \ˈtə-chē-nəs \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for touchy

Synonyms

huffy, tetchy, thin-skinned, ticklish

Antonyms

thick-skinned

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Examples of touchy in a Sentence

Don't be so touchy. I was just kidding. watch what you say around him, as he's very touchy about every little thing

Recent Examples on the Web

Three-mile-long Tilghman Island (tilghmanisland.com/) is revered for its rustic milieu, multi-generational watermen and Phillips Wharf Environment Center’s touchy-feely nature experiences. Stephanie Citron, baltimoresun.com, "Can’t-miss detours along Maryland's Eastern Shore to explore on your beach trip this summer," 8 May 2018 As the Libra Moon makes magic in your home zone, your deepest touchy-feely spots are activated. Bess Matassa, Teen Vogue, "Weekly Horoscopes July 16-22," 13 July 2018 To many in India, the plot twist - implicating Indians in a terrorist act, especially over the touchy issue of Kashmir - amounts to a betrayal by Chopra, who many here see as a quasi-ambassador for India in the West. Vidhi Doshi, chicagotribune.com, "A recent episode of Priyanka Chopra's 'Quantico' has Indians fuming," 6 June 2018 To many in India, the plot twist — implicating Indians in a terrorist act, especially over the touchy issue of Kashmir — amounts to a betrayal by Chopra, who many here see as a quasi-ambassador for India in the West. Vidhi Doshi, Washington Post, "A recent episode of Priyanka Chopra’s ‘Quantico’ has Indians fuming," 6 June 2018 The late Harlan Ellison, whose death at age 84 was announced on Thursday, was famously touchy about criticism. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Harlan Ellison’s Death Raises a #MeToo Quandary," 2 July 2018 Koalas, despite their placid appearance, can get touchy about being disturbed. Bradley J. Fikes, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Quincy the San Diego Zoo's diabetic koala, gets help from Dexcom," 25 June 2018 Xi is very touchy about people noting a resemblance between him and Winnie the Pooh, and Oliver went there. Alan Murray, Fortune, "China Trade War Latest, GE and Advent: CEO Daily for June 25, 2018," 25 June 2018 In this nominally socialist country, the widening gap between rich and poor remains a touchy subject that leaders can ill-afford to ignore. Don Lee, latimes.com, "In China's 'money worshiping' movie industry, stars' high pay becomes a target of the central government," 5 July 2018

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

1602, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for touchy

Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for touchy

The first known use of touchy was in 1602

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More Definitions for touchy

touchy

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of touchy

: easily hurt or upset by the things that people think or say about you

: likely to cause people to become upset

touchy

adjective
\ˈtə-chē \
touchier; touchiest

Kids Definition of touchy

1 : easily hurt or insulted She's touchy about her weight.

2 : calling for tact or careful handling a touchy subject

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Comments on touchy

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