Definition of measly in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈmēzlē/

adjective (measlier, measliest)

Contemptibly small or few: three measly votes
More example sentences
  • She hated the long hours, the measly wages, the heat of the kitchen, and most of all, she hated that she never saw Noah.
  • How could losing a measly five hours of sleep possibly make me this tired for the rest of the week?
  • He was about six feet tall while I was a measly five.
informal pathetic, stingy
contemptible, worthless, wretched, inconsequential, inferior


Late 16th century (describing a pig or pork infected with measles): from measles + -y1. The current sense dates from the mid 19th century.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: mea·sly

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