adjective, homelier, homeliest.
lacking in physical attractiveness; not beautiful; unattractive: a homely child.
not having elegance, refinement, or cultivation.
proper or suited to the home or to ordinary domestic life; plain; unpretentious: homely food.
commonly seen or known.

1300–50; Middle English homly. See home, -ly

homeliness, noun
overhomeliness, noun
overhomely, adjective
unhomeliness, noun
unhomely, adjective

1. homely, homey ; 2. homely, homily.

1, 2, 3. Simple, homely (homey), homelike, plain imply absence of adornment or embellishment. Something that is simple is not elaborate or complex: a simple kind of dress. In the United States, homely usually suggests absence of natural beauty: an unattractive person almost homely enough to be called ugly. In England, the word suggests a wholesome simplicity without artificial refinement or elegance; since it characterizes that which is comfortable and attractive, it is equivalent to homey: a homely cottage. Homelike also emphasizes comfort and attractiveness, but it conveys less strongly than does homey a sense of intimate security: a homelike interior, arrangement, atmosphere. Something that is plain has little or no adornment: expensive but plain clothing.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
homely (ˈhəʊmlɪ)
adj , -lier, -liest
1.  characteristic of or suited to the ordinary home; unpretentious
2.  of a person
 a.  (Brit) warm and domesticated in manner or appearance
 b.  chiefly (US), (Canadian) plain or ugly

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1300, "of or belonging to home or household, domestic," from M.E. hom "home." Sense of "plain, unadorned, simple" is late 14c., and extension to "having a plain appearance" took place before 1400, but now survives chiefly in U.S., esp. in New England, where it is the usual term for "physically unattractive;"
ugly being typically "ill-tempered."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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