Definition of tawdry in English:

tawdry

Line breaks: taw¦dry
Pronunciation: /ˈtɔːdri
 
/

adjective (tawdrier, tawdriest)

noun

[mass noun] archaic Back to top  
  • Cheap and gaudy finery.
    More example sentences
    • I had seen him in procession with his golden crook, preceded by the priests of his diocese, dressed up in all the tawdry of their canonicals.

Derivatives

tawdrily

adverb
More example sentences
  • They are very friendly, are not so tawdrily decorated as those we saw below, and use little or no paint.
  • My government is filled with people who are tawdrily seduced and unhealthily excited by proximity to it.
  • You find yourself much too ugly to go shopping in that bright mall with all these tawdrily dressed and rouged people?

tawdriness

noun
More example sentences
  • To say nothing of the undocumented - and maybe undocumentable - tawdriness and sordidness that lay ahead.
  • For, whatever the Age's tawdriness and corruption, Hamlet shares that Age's unique magnificence, in considerable part a product of aesthetic greediness.
  • Indeed, the Gilded Age involved far more than gilt, tawdriness, and corruption.

Origin

early 17th century: short for tawdry lace, a fine silk lace or ribbon worn as a necklace in the 16th–17th cents, contraction of St Audrey's lace: Audrey was a later form of Etheldrida (died 679), patron saint of Ely where tawdry laces, along with cheap imitations and other cheap finery, were traditionally sold at a fair.

More definitions of tawdry

Definition of tawdry in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day milord
Pronunciation: mɪˈlɔːd
noun
used to address an English nobleman