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[ur-thee] /ˈɜr θi/
adjective, earthier, earthiest.
of the nature of or consisting of earth or soil.
characteristic of earth:
an earthy smell.
realistic; practical.
coarse or unrefined:
an earthy sense of humor.
direct; robust; unaffected:
an earthy, generous woman.
(of a mineral) having a dull luster and rough to the touch.
Archaic. worldly; pertaining to the earth.
Origin of earthy
1350-1400; Middle English erthy. See earth, -y1
Related forms
earthily, adverb
earthiness, noun
Can be confused
earthly, earthy (see synonym study at earthly)
4. lusty, rough.
4. genteel, refined. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for earthy
  • His work is both artificial and natural, elegant and earthy.
  • Don't dare leave without trying one of these frosty, sweet, and slightly earthy gifts from the desert.
  • The weathered chunks exude a sweet, earthy aroma likened to tobacco, pine or mulch.
  • earthy, contemplative colors reflected a new interest in ecology and nature.
  • Their earthy red backgrounds reiterate the room's hues so closely that it seems the artist painted the walls to match.
  • Never mind that the presentation isn't completely perfect-the egg, mixing in with the earthy mushroom stew, is delicious.
  • The area was beautiful, the sounds serene, and even the smells delightful and earthy.
  • The truffle macaroni and cheese was to die for, luscious with a lovely earthy note from the truffle.
  • The drink is touted for its health benefits and is loved for its light, earthy taste.
  • Because it's an earthy, peasant-style dish, there's no singularly authentic recipe or preparation.
British Dictionary definitions for earthy


adjective earthier, earthiest
of, composed of, or characteristic of earth
robust, lusty, or uninhibited
unrefined, coarse, or crude
an archaic word for worldly (sense 1)
(electrical engineering) on the earthed side of an electrical circuit, but not necessarily with a direct current connection to earth
Derived Forms
earthily, adverb
earthiness, 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 earthy

1550s, from earth + -y (2). Figurative sense of "coarse, unrefined" is from 1590s. Related: Earthiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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