Definition of ugly in English:


Syllabification: ug·ly
Pronunciation: /ˈəɡlē

adjective (uglier, ugliest)

1Unpleasant or repulsive, especially in appearance: she thought she was ugly and fat the ugly sound of a fire alarm (as noun the ugly) he instinctively shrinks from the ugly
More example sentences
  • Sam, what on earth possessed you to spend all that time making a terrine that has the appearance of an ugly, withered, old leather boot?
  • They were fat, ugly men with wicked faces, like the one in the picture on the opposite page.
  • The sad, the ignored, the ugly and the repulsive wander in between the hours of 12 and 5.
unattractive, unappealing, unpleasant, hideous, unlovely, unprepossessing, unsightly, horrible, frightful, awful, ghastly, vile, revolting, repellent, repulsive, repugnant;
grotesque, disgusting, monstrous, reptilian, misshapen, deformed, disfigured;
homely, plain, not much to look at
informal plug ugly, butt ugly
vulgar slang fugly
1.1(Of a situation or mood) involving or likely to involve violence or other unpleasantness: the mood in the room turned ugly
More example sentences
  • Beyond that, there were no reports of violence and other ugly scenes that have characterised past elections.
  • I just don't see how creating an ugly, violent scene could possibly make those bereaved parents feel better.
  • It's hard not to warm to these men, who are nothing like the ugly, violent stereotypes we expect them to be.
unpleasant, nasty, disagreeable, alarming, tense, charged, serious, grave;
dangerous, perilous, threatening, menacing, hostile, ominous, sinister
1.2Unpleasantly suggestive; causing disquiet: ugly rumors persisted that there had been a cover-up
More example sentences
  • She thought of the ugly rumors that were going around about her and it released her anger a little.
  • She looked at the boys as their mouths formed the sounds of ugly words, pouring down at her like hot molasses.
1.3Morally repugnant: racism and its most ugly manifestations, racial attacks and harassment
More example sentences
  • These days most of us don't want to get too involved in national politics because it seems to partisan and ugly.
  • By doing this, it suggests continuity with the old regime, rather than complicity in an ugly coup of a popular mayor.
  • In his prime, his vindictiveness was ugly and frightening; now it's ugly and a little pathetic.


Middle English: from Old Norse uggligr 'to be dreaded', from ugga 'to dread'.



Pronunciation: /ˌəɡləfiˈkāSHən/
More example sentences
  • The 68-year-old, who smokes 30 cigarettes a day, also declared the black and white EU-imposed public health warnings on cigarette packets ‘the uglification of Europe’.
  • She has been criticized for being too beautiful for the part, and much has been made about her onscreen uglification, complete with her adoption of Kahlo's signature seagull-wing eyebrows.
  • Shaggy's statement that Lismore City Council's uglification of the riverbank has nothing to do with the flood levee is false.


Pronunciation: /ˈəɡləˌfī/
verb (uglifies, uglifying, uglified)
More example sentences
  • The gates of deserted factories, empty buildings, shabby houses, destroyed statues… Zhou could once have been accused of ‘viciously picturing the dark side and uglifying the city’ in a less tolerant social environment.
  • I decided that enough was finally enough, and sorted out the multiple electrical devices that had been uglifying my desk all these months.
  • I prefer not to uglify the scheme by adding significant figures, so for the purposes of this discussion, I will regard us as still being a Type 0.7.


More example sentences
  • And as far as sex goes, our white civilisation is crude, barbaric, and uglily savage.
  • I wondered as I saw some men in uniform gathered by the rear gate of the prison which squats uglily next to my flat.
  • Firefox and other browsers just let the rubric extend uglily beyond the edge of the content container.


More example sentences
  • One in five of the stories linked ugliness with evil and in many stories unsightly characters were punished as part of the plot.
  • Instead, I prefer to visit for a couple of days, with money in my wallet and then leave before it gets too real or I adjust to the ugliness and the noise.
  • What cosmic, mystical reason could there be for such evil and ugliness and destruction to exist?

Definition of ugly in:

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Word of the day retroflex
Pronunciation: ˈrɛtrə(ʊ)flɛks
turned backwards