Share this entry
clannish Line breaks: clan|nish
Pronunciation: /ˈklanɪʃ/

Definition of clannish in English:


chiefly derogatory
(Of a group or their activities) tending to exclude others outside the group: they are a clannish lot with no time for foreigners
More example sentences
  • They are insular, cliquey and clannish.
  • I can't stand how limited, how clannish, how narrow-minded they are!
  • The county is notorious for clannish thinking when it comes to the outside world.
cliquey, cliquish, insular, exclusive;
unfriendly, unwelcoming;
narrow, parochial, provincial


Example sentences
  • Although she is an Irish Catholic, Delia has fallen in love with a Protestant, married him, and moved away from the ethnic enclave where the rest of her family clannishly resides.
  • Many nationalities are here represented - mixed in some localities, clannishly separated in others.
  • While it is true that professionals stick together clannishly, the US system is superior on paper if not on the ground.
Example sentences
  • It's just as hard to penetrate the clannishness of islanders who've lived and played apart from the world for generations.
  • It's a nasty world, Scorsese agrees - a world of too much passion and too little sense, of ancient blood feuds and perilous clannishness.
  • One of the most infamous examples in America of the Scottish tendency to clannishness is the Hatfield and McCoy feud of the 1880s in the Tug River Valley along the West Virginia and Kentucky border.

Words that rhyme with clannish

banish, mannish, Spanish, tannish, vanish
Definition of clannish in:
Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Related Words