wriest [rahy-ist] SynonymsExamples adjective

  1. superlative of wry.

wry [rahy] adjective, wri·er, wri·est.

  1. produced by a distortion or lopsidedness of the facial features: a wry grin.
  2. abnormally bent or turned to one side; twisted; crooked: a wry mouth.
  3. devious in course or purpose; misdirected.
  4. contrary; perverse.
  5. distorted or perverted, as in meaning.
  6. bitterly or disdainfully ironic or amusing: a wry remark.

Origin of wry 1515–25; adj. use of wry to twist, Middle English wryen, Old English wrīgian to go, strive, tend, swerve; cognate with Dutch wrijgen to twist; akin to Old English wrigels, Latin rīcula veil, Greek rhoikós crookedRelated formswry·ly, adverbwry·ness, nounSynonyms for wry 2. awry, askew.Antonyms for wry 2. straight. Related Words for wriest droll, sardonic, ironic, mocking, warped, askew, awry, crooked, cynical, deformed, dry, twisted, uneven, aslant, contorted Examples from the Web for wriest Historical Examples of wriest

  • I confronted death with a smile; I meet life with the wriest of wry faces.

    Simon the Jester

    William J. Locke

  • British Dictionary definitions for wriest wriest wryest adjective

    1. the superlative of wry

    wry adjective wrier, wriest, wryer or wryest

    1. twisted, contorted, or askew
    2. (of a facial expression) produced or characterized by contorting of the features, usually indicating dislike
    3. drily humorous; sardonic
    4. warped, misdirected, or perverse
    5. (of words, thoughts, etc) unsuitable or wrong

    verb wries, wrying or wried

    1. (tr) to twist or contort

    Derived Formswryly, adverbwryness, nounWord Origin for wry C16: from dialect wry to twist, from Old English wrīgian to turn; related to Old Frisian wrīgia to bend, Old Norse riga to move, Middle Low German wrīch bent, stubborn Word Origin and History for wriest wry adj.

    1520s, “distorted, somewhat twisted,” from obsolete verb wry “to contort, to twist or turn,” from Old English wrigian “to turn, bend, move, go,” from Proto-Germanic *wrig- (cf. Old Frisian wrigia “to bend,” Middle Low German wrich “turned, twisted”), from PIE *wreik- “to turn” (cf. Greek rhoikos “crooked,” Lithuanian raisas “paralysed”), from root *wer- (3) “to turn, bend” (see versus). Of words, thoughts, etc., from 1590s. The original sense is preserved in awry.

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