Definition of wobbly in English:


Line breaks: wob¦bly
Pronunciation: /ˈwɒbli

adjective (wobblier, wobbliest)

  • 1Tending to move unsteadily from side to side: the car had a wobbly wheel
    More example sentences
    • You pack all your worldly goods into the car, travel to a muddy field, transfer all your worldly goods into a wobbly tin box on wheels and then sit and wait for the monsoon to begin.
    • More minor things also contribute, like pitted headsets, untrue wheels, wobbly tires and out-of-balance wheels.
    • It's only the e-commerce equivalent of an electronic shopping cart developing a wobbly wheel, so you can only make it turn left - just like a real shopping cart.
    unsteady, unstable, shaky, rocky, rickety; flimsy, frail, spindly, unsafe, precarious, insecure; uneven, unbalanced
    informal teetery
    British informal wonky, dicky
  • 1.1(Of a person) weak and unsteady from illness, tiredness, or anxiety: she still felt a bit wobbly on her legs
    More example sentences
    • I'll not have my best student coming back with a weak sword arm and wobbly legs.
    • I started to feel very weak and wobbly and my legs gave way beneath me and I collapsed.
    • No wonder he is more wobbly after all that drink.
    shaky, trembling, shaking, tremulous, quivering, quivery, doddery, unsteady
    informal trembly
    faint, dizzy, light-headed, giddy; weak, weak-kneed, weak at the knees, quivery, unsteady, groggy, muzzy
    informal trembly, all of a tremble, all of a quiver, like jelly, with rubbery legs, woozy
    rare vertiginous
  • 1.2Uncertain, wavering, or insecure: the evening got off to a wobbly start
    More example sentences
    • The system in this country is so insecure and so wobbly.
    • It was more along the lines of a very uncertain, wobbly romance that might fall apart at any second.
    • I think my Nokia problem stems from a wobbly disconnect that I attempted when I noticed someone had sent me a 2.5 MB attachment.
  • 1.3(Of a person or voice) tending to move out of tone or slightly vary in pitch: a wobbly soprano
    More example sentences
    • Charlotte Church shot to fame as the little schoolgirl with the big wobbly voice.
    • In Dragoni's first big scene she was wobbly, her voice broke, she tried singing lower, and crumbled on every big note.
    • A small, wobbly voice cut through the comforting blackness and oblivion, just audible above the constant hiss of the waves breaking on the slimy, moss-covered stone outside.
  • 1.4(Of a line or handwriting) not straight or regular.
    More example sentences
    • Grace and Vahn the title said, in Ellie's large, wobbly handwriting.
    • I noticed that she neglected to sign it, and her handwriting was rather wobbly and etchy, as if her hand was shaking when she wrote it.
    • Lustig added that the writing was wobbly, so she gave high praise to the Issaquah mail-sorting system.


[in singular] British informal Back to top  
  • 1A fit of temper or panic: my daughter threw a wobbly when I wouldn’t let her play
    More example sentences
    • Take this one insurance company, for example, which last week threw a wobbly over the £2m pay-off for, former British Airways boss.
    • And when my grand-children cluster round me and ask what it was like when he threw a wobbly on a daytime chatshow, what a story I will have to tell.
    • I had a fight with Josh, and threw a wobbly with everyone else to get my own way.
  • 1.1 (the wobblies) A fit of panic: the driver was having an attack of the wobblies



More example sentences
  • I felt very well, apart from some slight wobbliness at the end of day three as I was packing up.
  • By way of punishment, we were to spend every day after school for a whole two weeks tightening up the screws on every single chair in the establishment, and hammering home wooden wedges to ensure that wobbliness was a thing of the past.
  • Rich salt-mines created a town not only of great substance but also of great wobbliness, as the saltworks wreaked architectural havoc for over 1100 years.

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