9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[kwiz-i-kuh l] /ˈkwɪz ɪ kəl/
odd, queer, or comical.
questioning or puzzled:
a quizzical expression on her face.
derisively questioning, ridiculing, or chaffing.
Origin of quizzical
1790-1800; quiz + -ical
Related forms
quizzicality, quizzicalness, noun
quizzically, adverb
unquizzical, adjective
unquizzically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for quizzical
  • The fruit attracted some quizzical glances, the rabbi noticed.
  • After a short, quizzical instrumental introduction, the opera introduces the sisterly wives in an extended quintet.
  • He was playing one of his tenderly quizzical ballad lines on alto saxophone when he toppled suddenly to the stage.
  • When he started patrolling the campus this fall, he said he got a lot of quizzical stares from students and faculty alike.
  • Onstage, he was a wily savant, quizzical and wide-eyed but not naive.
  • She tells quizzical stories of her life and limberness as a streetwalker.
  • If you have, you probably engendered some quizzical, even suspicious looks.
  • Chen stood to one side, a quizzical expression on his face.
  • It is another one of those quizzical, only-in-golf mysteries.
  • The immensely popular band with the quizzical name is in town to do its thing, and it's free.
British Dictionary definitions for quizzical


questioning and mocking or supercilious: a quizzical look
Derived Forms
quizzicality, noun
quizzically, adverb
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 quizzical

1789, from quiz "odd or eccentric person" (1782), of unknown origin (see quiz (n.)) + -ical. Related: Quizzically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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