1

wry

play
verb \ˈrī\

Definition of wry

wried

;

wrying

  1. intransitive verb
  2. :  twist, writhe

  3. transitive verb
  4. :  to pull out of or as if out of proper shape :  make awry

Origin and Etymology of wry

Middle English wrien, from Old English wrigian to turn; akin to Middle High German rigel kerchief wound around the head, Greek rhiknos shriveled, Avestan urvisyeiti he turns


First Known Use: 14th century


2

wry

adjective

Definition of wry

wryer

play \ˈrī(-ə)r\;

wryest

play \ˈrī-əst\
  1. 1 :  bent, twisted, or turned usually abnormally to one side <a wry nose>

  2. 2 :  made by a deliberate distortion of the facial muscles often to express irony or mockery <a wry smile>

  3. 3 :  wrongheaded 1

  4. 4 :  cleverly and often ironically or grimly humorous <a wry wit>

wryly

play \ˈrī-lē\ adverb

wryness

noun

Examples of wry in a sentence

  1. His books are noted for their wry humor.

  2. When I asked her how she felt after winning the race, she gave me a wry smile and said, Pretty tired.

15th Century

First Known Use of wry

15th century


WRY Defined for English Language Learners


2

wry

adjective

Definition of wry for English Language Learners

  • : humorous in a clever and often ironic way

  • : showing both amusement and a feeling of being tired, annoyed, etc.


WRY Defined for Kids

wry

play
adjective \ˈrī\

Definition of wry for Students

wryer

wryest

  1. 1 :  funny in a clever or ironic way <a wry remark>

  2. 2 :  expressing irony <a wry smile>



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a principle or belief held by a group

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ