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ornery

[awr-nuh-ree] /ˈɔr nə ri/
adjective, ornerier, orneriest. Dialect
1.
ugly and unpleasant in disposition or temper:
No one can get along with my ornery cousin.
2.
stubborn:
I can't do a thing with that ornery mule.
3.
low or vile.
4.
inferior or common; ordinary.
Origin
1790-1800
1790-1800; contraction of ordinary
Related forms
orneriness, noun
Synonyms
1. mean, ill-tempered, ill-natured, surly, testy.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for orneriness
  • What makes them seem transhuman to us now is their sheer orneriness.
  • As president of the debate team, he developed a reputation for orneriness.
British Dictionary definitions for orneriness

ornery

/ˈɔːnərɪ/
adjective (US & Canadian, dialect or informal)
1.
stubborn or vile-tempered
2.
low; treacherous: an ornery trick
3.
ordinary
Derived Forms
orneriness, noun
Word Origin
C19: alteration of ordinary
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 orneriness

ornery

adj.

1816, American English dialectal contraction of ordinary (adj.). "Commonplace," hence "of poor quality, coarse, ugly." By c.1860 the sense had evolved to "mean, cantankerous." Related: Orneriness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for orneriness

ornery

adjective

Mean and irascible; ill-tempered: He wasconfident and ornery on the mound

[1816+; fr a dialect pronunciation of ordinary]


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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