Why was clemency trending last week?


[key-jee] /ˈkeɪ dʒi/
adjective, cagier, cagiest.
cautious, wary, or shrewd:
a cagey reply to the probing question.
Also, cagy.
Origin of cagey
1890-95, Americanism; cage + -y1
Related forms
cagily, adverb
caginess, cageyness, noun
careful, prudent, leery, chary.
open, forthright. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for cagey
  • Indeed, network algorithms do not favor the cagey or secretive.
  • Behind the snarl lies a cagey opportunist, proficient hunter, and dutiful parent.
  • But, if you were cagey enough to do the rewinding the film trick, then maybe you'd be up for this trick.
  • Stunning photographs, action-packed stories, and thorough research complete the picture of these cagey cats.
  • However, being cagey until there is an offer out is not the solution.
  • Malaria parasites have spent centuries adapting to life in the human body, and as a result have grown cagey.
  • They get cagey and defensive when you point out that they have no non-profit status or address.
  • She plays cagey games with tax returns, never accepts blame for anything, and rarely criticizes herself in any meaningful way.
  • There's a reason the oil giant is being so cagey about the spill's true size.
  • They're cagey about the details, but it seems to involve pouring out molten silicon.
British Dictionary definitions for cagey


adjective -ier, -iest
(informal) not open or frank; cautious; wary
Derived Forms
cagily, adverb
caginess, noun
Word Origin
C20: of unknown origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for cagey

"evasive, reticent," 1896, U.S. colloquial, of unknown origin. Earlier in English dialect it meant "sportive."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for cagey



Shrewd; wary; pawky: a quiet, cagy observer

[1890s+; perhaps fr the expression play a caged game, ''be careful, keep your intentions concealed,'' attested in 1890s]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for cagey

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for cagey

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for cagey