un·​ti·​dy | \ ˌən-ˈtī-dē How to pronounce untidy (audio) \

Definition of untidy

1a : not neat : slovenly their untidy kitchen
b : not neat or orderly in habits or procedure an untidy mind
2a : not neatly organized or carried out an untidy manuscript
b : conducive to a lack of neatness untidy tasks like bathing the babyNew Yorker

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Other Words from untidy

untidily \ ˌən-​ˈtī-​də-​lē How to pronounce untidily (audio) \ adverb
untidiness \ ˌən-​ˈtī-​dē-​nəs How to pronounce untidiness (audio) \ noun

Examples of untidy in a Sentence

I can never find anything in this untidy office. neighbors gossiped about the woman's rumpled and untidy children
Recent Examples on the Web My closet is typically a hair-raising tumble of clothes—some haphazardly hung, some stacked on shelves in untidy, teetering piles. Kathryn O'shea-evans, House Beautiful, "Why You're Organizing Everything in Your House Right Now," 17 Apr. 2020 New York City, a place where strangers’ lives intertwine in fantastic and untidy ways, has been forced into solitude by social distancing measures. Isabella Kwai, New York Times, "Coronavirus, Spain, New York: Your Tuesday Briefing," 31 Mar. 2020 The orchestra sounded less refined than usual, violins in particular untidy in some upper-range writing. Scott Cantrell, Dallas News, "An elegantly structured Dallas Symphony program, but performances weren’t the best," 7 Mar. 2020 That same day, Self’s cellmate complained that Self was untidy and asked him to clean up the cell. oregonlive, "Oregon man enters jail with broken jaw and says fellow inmate broke it again; sues for $3 million," 10 Apr. 2020 Even the untidy among us have become germophobes, incessantly washing our hands and wiping down surfaces. Peter Fimrite, SFChronicle.com, "Because of coronavirus we’re doing things differently. How long will that last?," 15 Mar. 2020 Horton’s untidy, rampant suburban garden swamps fences and pergolas and seems to rise like a tide toward the red-roofed houses themselves. Jenny Uglow, The New York Review of Books, "Garden of Painterly Delights," 16 Mar. 2020 And since this is a McDonagh play, things will become — untidy. Dan Barry, New York Times, "You’ve Got the Wrong Idea About Martin McDonagh," 4 Mar. 2020 The ethos of the new MOMA—to revise the myth of modern art as a triumphant procession of great white men and instead tell the glorious, untidy truth of a bunch of weird human beings—finds its most exciting expression in Sillman’s selections. Andrea K. Scott, The New Yorker, "Reframing Modernism at the New MOMA," 12 Nov. 2019

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

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

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Time Traveler for untidy

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for untidy

Last Updated

28 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Untidy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/untidy. Accessed 6 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for untidy


How to pronounce untidy (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of untidy

: not neat or clean
: not having neat or clean habits
: not done in an organized and pleasant way


un·​ti·​dy | \ ˌən-ˈtī-dē How to pronounce untidy (audio) \
untidier; untidiest

Kids Definition of untidy

: not neat

Other Words from untidy

untidily \ -​ˈtī-​də-​lē \ adverb
untidiness \ -​ˈtī-​dē-​nəs \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on untidy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for untidy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with untidy

Spanish Central: Translation of untidy

Nglish: Translation of untidy for Spanish Speakers

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