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[huhs-kee] /ˈhʌs ki/
adjective, huskier, huskiest.
big and strong; burly.
(of the voice) having a semiwhispered vocal tone; somewhat hoarse, as when speaking with a cold or from grief or passion.
like, covered with, or full of husks.
made in a size meant for the larger or heavier than average boy:
size 18 husky pants.
for, pertaining to, or wearing clothing in this size:
the husky department; husky boys.
noun, plural huskies.
a size of garments meant for the larger or heavier than average boy.
Origin of husky1
1545-55; husk + -y1
Related forms
huskily, adverb
huskiness, noun
1. robust, brawny, strapping. 2. harsh, gruff, rasping, throaty. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for huskily
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Goles gave him no thanks, but he said huskily: "I heard one of the sailors say she's a goner."

    Wide Courses James Brendan Connolly
  • Then he laid his head on the table and began to sob, talking brokenly and huskily.

    The Opal Serpent Fergus Hume
  • "I won't ever do nothin' for her; but if ever you see her, I'd like you to help her out if she needs it," he said huskily.

    Gordon Keith Thomas Nelson Page
  • "Not at all," replied Bones, huskily; but with a fine carelessness.

    Bones Edgar Wallace
  • I said, huskily—for my heart was fluttering like a captive bird.

  • "Maybe I've missed it and maybe I ain't," she said, huskily.

  • “Bel, old lad,” he said huskily, and he winced with pain as he tried to stretch out his left hand.

    To Win or to Die George Manville Fenn
  • "I got that last week, and it seemed final," he said huskily.

    The Faith Doctor Edward Eggleston
  • "I hadn't any idea of anything of that kind," said Mrs. Rose, huskily.

British Dictionary definitions for huskily


adjective huskier, huskiest
(of a voice, an utterance, etc) slightly hoarse or rasping
of, like, or containing husks
(informal) big, strong, and well-built
Derived Forms
huskily, adverb
huskiness, noun
Word Origin
C19: probably from husk, from the toughness of a corn husk


noun (pl) huskies
a breed of Arctic sled dog with a thick dense coat, pricked ears, and a curled tail
(Canadian, slang)
  1. a member of the Inuit people
  2. the Inuit language
Word Origin
C19: probably based on Eskimo
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 huskily



"hoarse," c.1722 in reference to a cattle disease (of persons, 1740), from husk on the notion of "dry as a husk." Earlier (1550s) "having husks." Sense of "tough and strong" (like corn husks) is first found 1869, American English. Related: Huskily; huskiness.


"Eskimo dog," 1852, Canadian English, earlier (1830) hoskey "an Eskimo," probably shortened variant of Ehuskemay (1743), itself a variant of Eskimo.

The moment any vessel is noticed steering for these islands [Whalefish Islands], the Esquimaux, or "Huskies,"* as the Danes customarily term them, come off in sufficient numbers to satisfy you that you are near the haunts of uncivilized men, and will afford sufficient information to guide any stranger to his anchorage. *"Husky" is their own term. I recollect the chorus to a song at Kamtchatka was "Husky, Husky." ["Last of the Arctic Voyages," London, 1855]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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