Definition of cowardly in English:

cowardly

Line breaks: cow|ard¦ly
Pronunciation: /ˈkaʊədli
 
/

adjective

1Lacking courage: he was a weak, cowardly man
More example sentences
  • There is more foolishness, more cowardly hearts, less courage, lack of appreciation and gratitude and less politeness.
  • A strange country where the military lost their power but none of the cowardly politicians had the courage to tell them.
  • The more cowardly completely lost courage, but the more able and subtle did not think it necessary to give up.
Synonyms
faint-hearted, lily-livered, chicken-hearted, pigeon-hearted, spiritless, spineless, craven; timid, timorous, fearful, trembling, quaking, shrinking, cowering, afraid of one's own shadow, pusillanimous, weak, feeble, soft
British informal wet
North American informal candy-assed
North American vulgar slang chickenshit
1.1(Of an action) carried out against a person who is unable to retaliate: a cowardly attack on a helpless victim
More example sentences
  • This man has carried out a cowardly attack on an elderly woman who he knew would not be able to defend herself.
  • We are also certain that the police will apprehend the criminal who carried out this cowardly deed.
  • This appears to be a premeditated and cowardly racially motivated attack.

adverb

archaic Back to top  
In a way which shows a lack of courage.

Derivatives

cowardliness

noun
More example sentences
  • You could not be blamed for the craven cowardliness of your opponent, could you?
  • They have decided to risk losing through cowardliness, rather than to risk winning through valor.
  • The shameful cowardliness of the man's commentating is simply unacceptable.

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