unwieldy was our Word of the Day on 11/15/2012. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of unwieldy in a Sentence
The system is outdated and unwieldy.
an unwieldy machine that requires two people to operate it
Recent Examples of unwieldy from the Web
Few appliances are as unwieldy and unsightly as a window air-conditioner.
True, the current system wastes millions of pounds on an unwieldy commissioning process.
Hock: If the United States is too vast and unwieldy to reinvent the development system, how’s this for an experiment?
In practice, the success of the laws vary: some have unwieldy, even humiliating medical requirements; and most tend to be under-utilized for fear of backlash.
But the grade levels will be grouped together in separate wings of the new building to avoid an unwieldy student body size.
But handle those unwieldy appliances with care to avoid injury.
The left-leaning Green party, with eight seats, has an alliance agreement to back Labour in government, though it was set to meet Thursday to decide whether to join what would be an unwieldy three-party coalition.
This unwieldy mechanism was used many times after Watergate; its most famous appointment was that of Kenneth Starr to serve as Whitewater independent prosecutor in 1994.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'unwieldy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
The Difference Between Wieldy and unwieldy
The verb to wield means "to handle or exert something effectively." A carpenter might wield a hammer with impressive dexterity, for example, or a talented orator might wield influence over an audience of listeners. Something that is "wieldy" is capable of being wielded easily, and while that adjective may not be particularly common, its antonym "unwieldy" finds ample use to describe anything that is awkward to handle, move, or manage. "Wield" and its relatives all derive via Middle English from Old English wieldan, meaning "to control."
First Known Use of unwieldy
Synonymsawkward, bunglesome, clumsy, clunky, cranky, cumbrous, ponderous, ungainly, unhandy, cumbersome
Related Wordsuncontrollable, unmanageable; bulky, dinosaurian, dinosauric, elephantine, heavy, hulking, massive; impracticable, impractical
Near Antonymsfunctional, practicable, practical, serviceable, useful
UNWIELDY Defined for English Language Learners
UNWIELDY Defined for Kids
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