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[drou-zee] /ˈdraʊ zi/
adjective, drowsier, drowsiest.
half-asleep; sleepy.
marked by or resulting from sleepiness.
dull; sluggish.
inducing lethargy or sleepiness:
drowsy spring weather.
Origin of drowsy
1520-30; drowse + -y1
Related forms
drowsily, adverb
drowsiness, noun
1. somnolent, dozy. 3. lethargic, listless. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for drowsy
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Sometimes I went with him on Sunday to hear the minister, but I was always tired and drowsy, and could not keep awake.'

    Effie Maurice Fanny Forester
  • I have not been in bed all night; nor am I in the least drowsy.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9) Samuel Richardson
  • "I'm depending upon you for the bread," he said to the drowsy man in the hammock.

  • She was talking to me in this way one drowsy August afternoon.

    The Harbor Ernest Poole
  • During the interval of several seconds he remained in a sort of drowsy stupor, with his gaze fixed upon the curling flames.

    The Red Tavern Charles Raymond Macauley
  • The mate, who by this time was drowsy, did as desired, and in a moment the Arab was at liberty.

    Homeward Bound James Fenimore Cooper
  • A reduction of ten per cent every week can be carried through, if a pledge is given to one's self in a drowsy state.

    Psychotherapy Hugo Mnsterberg
British Dictionary definitions for drowsy


adjective drowsier, drowsiest
heavy with sleepiness; sleepy
inducing sleep; soporific
sluggish or lethargic; dull
Derived Forms
drowsily, adverb
drowsiness, noun
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
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Word Origin and History for drowsy

1520s, probably ultimately from Old English drusan, drusian "sink," also "become languid, slow, or inactive" (related to dreosan "to fall"), from Proto-Germanic *drus- (see dreary). But there is no record of it in Middle English. Related: Drowsily; drowsiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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