Definition of sluggish in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsləɡiSH/


1Slow-moving or inactive: a sluggish stream
More example sentences
  • Cape clawless otters spend most of their active time in water - especially in quiet ponds, marshes, and sluggish type streams.
  • Anywhere a track runs down to the shore will do; park the car and watch egrets flapping lazily across the fat and sluggish stream.
  • I always wondered why no one crossed via the Rio Grande, a sluggish stream when I passed over it.
inactive, quiet, slow, slack, flat, depressed, stagnant
1.1Lacking energy or alertness: Alex woke late feeling tired and sluggish
More example sentences
  • My introspection loses a lot of its working energy and becomes sluggish, gloomy, self-nagging and self-doubting.
  • If you're sluggish, pump quick energy into your system by eating simple carbohydrates.
  • Simplistically speaking, ginseng calms hyper people and gives sluggish people energy.
lethargic, listless, lacking in energy, lifeless, inert, inactive, underactive, slow, torpid, languid, apathetic, weary, tired, fatigued, sleepy, drowsy, enervated;
lazy, idle, indolent, slothful, sluggardly, logy;
Medicine  asthenic
informal dozy, dopey
1.2Slow to respond or make progress: the car had been sluggish all morning
More example sentences
  • Engines usually idle slower and are sluggish to respond until they warm up.
  • But the sluggish global economy has led many foreign firms to slow overseas expansion, offsetting some of that this year, analysts said.
  • The Fed is predicted to respond to the more sluggish economy by lowering rates.



Pronunciation: /ˈsləɡiSHlē/
Example sentences
  • The game opened very sluggishly with both sides guilty of poor finishing and it was only in the ninth minute that the scoreboard first saw some activity.
  • Europe has also maintained its prosperity, and although its economies are growing sluggishly, they are growing.
  • Touch it and it breaks up, rolls sluggishly away in pieces, like mercury.


Pronunciation: /ˈsləɡiSHnəs/
Example sentences
  • But sometimes fatigue and sluggishness are caused by an underactive thyroid and these external forces simply exacerbate an already stressed thyroid gland.
  • Earth's mass, moreover, measures Earth's inertia or sluggishness if we tried to stop or change its movement through space.
  • Stopping caffeine suddenly, however, can cause sluggishness, fatigue, headache and grumpiness.


Late Middle English: from the noun slug1 or the verb slug (see sluggard) + -ish1.

Words that rhyme with sluggish

puggish, thuggish

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: slug·gish

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