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[sprahy] /spraɪ/
adjective, spryer, spryest or sprier, spriest.
active; nimble; agile; energetic; brisk.
Origin of spry
1740-50; origin uncertain
Related forms
spryly, adverb
spryness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for spry
  • McCauley's sixth novel, and while his characters are getting older, their creator's wit remains spry.
  • My generation and those following can retire into a spry and well-medicated second century.
  • Some people are spry and nimble in their elder years.
  • Ten players, five of them defeated, five of them as spry as rabbits.
  • Although seventy-four years of age, he is as spry and jovial as many persons are in the prime of life.
  • For those spry enough to crawl underneath, it also serves as a cavelike shelter.
  • They came in bow ties and crimson gowns, spry of step or aided by walkers, their college memories more or less intact.
  • Once ingratiating and spry as an actor, he's getting dangerously close to that wind-chill factor that doesn't need others anymore.
  • Moreover, they did not display their parents' susceptibility to cancer and diabetes and lived to a spry old age.
  • After he finished, parliamentarians one after another congratulated him on looking relatively spry.
British Dictionary definitions for spry


adjective spryer, spryest, sprier, spriest
active and brisk; nimble
Derived Forms
spryly, adverb
spryness, noun
Word Origin
C18: perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare Swedish dialect spraggsprig
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 spry

1746, dialectal, perhaps a shortening and alteration of sprightly, or from a Scandinavian source (cf. Old Norse sprækr, dialectal Swedish sprygg "brisk, active"), from Proto-Germanic *sprek-, from PIE *(s)preg- "to jerk, scatter" (see sparse).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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