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sulky

[suhl-kee] /ˈsʌl ki/
adjective, sulkier, sulkiest.
1.
marked by or given to sulking; sullen.
2.
gloomy or dull:
sulky weather.
noun, plural sulkies.
3.
a light, two-wheeled, one-horse carriage for one person.
Origin
1735-1745
1735-45; akin to Old English solcen- lazy (in solcennes laziness), Frisian (N dial.) sulkig sulky
Related forms
sulkily, adverb
sulkiness, noun
unsulkily, adverb
unsulkiness, noun
unsulky, adjective
Synonyms
1. moody, surly, morose, churlish.
Antonyms
1. good-humored, good-natured.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for sulky
  • We dined with him in a sulky silence, after a few ineffectual efforts on my part to talk.
  • He's been surly, sulky, nasty and over the top in belittling you.
  • Toward the end, she produces one sulky scowl that makes you grateful for a new facial expression.
  • They pose aggressively and their faces are set in a sulky come-on.
  • These include mandatory safety vests, sulky inspections and workmen's compensation, which must be carried by all trainers.
  • At first the homesteader walked behind the plow, but later a sulky plow was invented allowing the homesteader to ride.
British Dictionary definitions for sulky

sulky1

/ˈsʌlkɪ/
adjective sulkier, sulkiest
1.
sullen, withdrawn, or moody, through or as if through resentment
2.
dull or dismal sulky weather
Derived Forms
sulkily, adverb
sulkiness, noun
Word Origin
C18: perhaps from obsolete sulke sluggish, probably related to Old English āseolcan to be lazy

sulky2

/ˈsʌlkɪ/
noun (pl) sulkies
1.
a light two-wheeled vehicle for one person, usually drawn by one horse
Word Origin
C18: from sulky1, because it can carry only one person
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 sulky
sulky
"sullen," 1744, probably from O.E. asolcen "idle, lazy, slow," from pp. of aseolcan "become sluggish, be weak or idle" (related to besylcan "be languid"), from P.Gmc. *seklanan (cf. M.H.G. selken "to drop, fall").
sulky
"light carriage with two wheels," 1756, apparently a noun use of sulky (adj.), on notion of "standoffishness," because the carriage has room for only one person.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for sulky

originally a light, open, one-horse, four-wheeled vehicle with its single seat for only one person fixed on its shafts. It is thought to have been invented in the early 19th century by an English physician and was supposedly named for his sulkiness in wishing to sit alone. The sulky was adapted to two wheels and widely used in the United States by doctors and others who had to travel extensively by themselves.

Learn more about sulky with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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