follow Dictionary.com

Why turkey has the same name as Turkey

coy

[koi] /kɔɪ/
adjective, coyer, coyest.
1.
artfully or affectedly shy or reserved; slyly hesitant; coquettish.
2.
shy; modest.
3.
showing reluctance, especially when insincere or affected, to reveal one's plans or opinions, make a commitment, or take a stand:
The mayor was coy about his future political aspirations.
4.
Archaic. disdainful; aloof.
5.
Obsolete. quiet; reserved.
verb (used without object)
6.
Archaic. to act in a coy manner.
verb (used with object), Obsolete
7.
to quiet; soothe.
8.
to pat; caress.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English < Anglo-French coi, quoy calm, Old French quei < Vulgar Latin *quētus, for Latin quiētus quiet
Related forms
coyish, adjective
coyishness, noun
coyly, adverb
coyness, noun
overcoy, adjective
overcoyly, adverb
overcoyness, noun
uncoy, adjective
uncoyly, adverb
uncoyness, noun
Synonyms
2. retiring, diffident, bashful, demure.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for coyness
  • Their coyness is likely to continue until a political transition is consolidated.
  • There were no hints of camp or coyness, no mocking musical gestures.
  • The children, both non-professionals, remain utterly convincing without a hint of coyness or calculation.
British Dictionary definitions for coyness

coy

/kɔɪ/
adjective
1.
(usually of a woman) affectedly demure, esp in a playful or provocative manner
2.
shy; modest
3.
evasive, esp in an annoying way
Derived Forms
coyish, adjective
coyly, adverb
coyness, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French coi reserved, from Latin quiētusquiet
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 coyness

coy

adj.

early 14c., "quiet, modest, demure," from Old French coi, earlier quei "quiet, still, placid, gentle," ultimately from Latin quietus "resting, at rest" (see quiet (n.)). Meaning "shy" emerged late 14c. Meaning "unwilling to commit" is 1961. Related: Coyly; coyness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for coy

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for coyness

12
13
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with coyness

Nearby words for coyness