\ ˈwī(-ə)r-ē How to pronounce wiry (audio) \
wirier\ ˈwī-​rē-​ər How to pronounce wiry (audio) \; wiriest

Definition of wiry

1a archaic : made of wire
b : resembling wire especially in form and flexibility the wiry coat of the Irish terrier wiry stems
c of sound : produced by or suggestive of the vibration of wire the violinist … often let his tone go nasal and wiry— D. J. Henahan
2 : being lean, supple, and vigorous : sinewy the wiry figure of a long-distance runnerPhoenix Flame

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from wiry

wirily \ ˈwī-​rə-​lē How to pronounce wiry (audio) \ adverb
wiriness \ ˈwī-​rē-​nəs How to pronounce wiry (audio) \ noun

Examples of wiry in a Sentence

a man with long, wiry arms She was lean and wiry from years of working out. He has dark, wiry hair.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web The wiry 6-foot-5 wing looked fluid enough on offense, connecting on 2 of 6 from 3-point range and dishing three assists in 22 minutes of action. Nick Moyle, ExpressNews.com, "Texas notebook: Jase Febres makes season debut," 19 Jan. 2021 Warden Bill Dailey, 30, a wiry and intense Colorado native, knew exactly what was going on, but stopping it was all but impossible. Hal Herring, Field & Stream, "F&S Classics: Takedown," 27 Dec. 2020 At the center of the story is a wiry, bright-eyed 16-year-old boy struggling to make the best of difficult circumstances, as the forces that should protect him fail to do just that. Los Angeles Times, "Essential California: The best California writing of 2020," 24 Dec. 2020 Around the same time hairs lose melanin — the colored pigment found in hair — follicles start producing less sebum (oil), and as a result strands become more wiry and less pliable. Amber Rambharose, Allure, "The Science of Beauty: How to Take Care of Curly Hair," 10 Dec. 2020 The Texas point guard sized up wiry UNC freshman R.J. Davis, drove right-to-left across the key, hop-stepped backward at the elbow and floated a soft jumper over the defense. Nick Moyle, ExpressNews.com, "Matt Coleman’s game-winner propels No. 17 Texas to first Maui Invitational title," 2 Dec. 2020 Infusing the wiry floor-spacer – Smart gave Jones the greenest of lights – into long and athletic lineup should create better spacing and open up wider lanes for the team’s assortment of guards and slashers. Nick Moyle, ExpressNews.com, "No. 19 Texas readies for relocated Maui Invitational," 29 Nov. 2020 Konieczny has the same wiry frame/perimeter stroke as former Irish swingman V.J. Beachem, who scored 1,234 career points in 3,068 minutes over 132 career games. Tom Noie, The Indianapolis Star, "Notre Dame men's basketball secures home-grown J.R. Konieczny," 11 Nov. 2020 Dimock is a wiry 47-year-old with short black hair and a bright smile. Star Tribune, "“They have been doing business their way, and it's not been fair to people of brown and black skin. It's time for a change, and we must work together to make that change become a reality.”," 24 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wiry.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of wiry

1588, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about wiry

Statistics for wiry

Last Updated

27 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Wiry.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wiry. Accessed 28 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for wiry

How to pronounce wiry (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wiry

: very thin but strong and muscular
: stiff like wire
\ ˈwīr-ē How to pronounce wiry (audio) \
wirier; wiriest

Kids Definition of wiry

1 : being slender yet strong and muscular
2 : coarse and stiff wiry hair

More from Merriam-Webster on wiry

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wiry

Nglish: Translation of wiry for Spanish Speakers

Comments on wiry

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!