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[mahy-zer-lee] /ˈmaɪ zər li/
of, like, or befitting a miser; penurious; stingy; niggardly.
Origin of miserly
1585-95; miser + -ly
Related forms
miserliness, noun
unmiserly, adjective
cheap, parsimonious. See stingy1 .
generous. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for miserly
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • miserly and spiteful, he was jealous of the Coupeaus in their success, and rejoiced at their downfall.

    A Zola Dictionary J. G. Patterson
  • It'll cost him more than he'll ever get from my miserly uncle to repair it.

    Brave and Bold Horatio Alger
  • A miserly daw, who would not risk a crown to save the crown.

    The Lady of Loyalty House Justin Huntly McCarthy
  • Ruth remembered what Roberto had said about his miserly grandmother.

  • Yet be prudent, neither lavish nor miserly; right measure be your rule.

  • Ruth Fielding was an orphan and came to live with her miserly uncle.

  • It is only when it believes something to be rare that the mind ceases to be miserly in assigning values.

    My Reminiscences Rabindranath Tagore
  • He was so careful, so—so miserly in some ways, so wildly extravagant in others.

    Good Old Anna Marie Belloc Lowndes
  • If he failed he had to go live with a miserly uncle whom he despised.

    The Putnam Hall Rebellion Arthur M. Winfield
British Dictionary definitions for miserly


of or resembling a miser; avaricious
Derived Forms
miserliness, 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 miserly

1590s, from miser + -ly (1). Related: Miserliness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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