\ ˈwäŋ-kē How to pronounce wonky (audio) , ˈwȯŋ- \
wonkier; wonkiest

Definition of wonky

 (Entry 1 of 2)

US
: characteristic of, relating to, or suggestive of a wonk: such as
a : preoccupied with arcane details or procedures in a specialized field She can get wonky about the economy when she wants to, but what sets her apart is her ability to tell a coherent, populist story about it in a way that other members of her party are either unwilling or unable to do.— Rebecca Traister
b : used by or appealing to wonks … one of those politicians who actually find pleasure in the often-wonky details of public policy.— John Powers
won·​ky | \ ˈwäŋ-kē How to pronounce wonky (audio) \
wonkier; wonkiest

Definition of wonky (Entry 2 of 2)

1 British : unsteady, shaky
2 chiefly British : awry, wrong

Other Words from wonky

Adjective (1)

wonkiness noun

First Known Use of wonky

Adjective (1)

1978, in the meaning defined above

Adjective (2)

1918, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for wonky

Adjective (2)

probably alteration of English dialect wankle, from Middle English wankel, from Old English wancol; akin to Old High German wankōn to totter — more at wench

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Cite this Entry

“Wonky.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wonky. Accessed 15 Jun. 2021.

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