Word of the Day Archive
Friday April 25, 2003
maladroit \mal-uh-DROYT\ , adjective:
Lacking adroitness; clumsy; awkward; unskillful; inept.
Do you know someone who . . . loves quiet conversations about feelings or ideas, and can give a dynamite presentation to a big audience, but seems awkward in groups and maladroit at small talk?
-- Jonathan Rauch, "Caring for Your Introvert", The Atlantic, March 2003
Dodging these equally maladroit skiers in a small area is pretty tough going -- especially when our few seconds of downhill glory are followed by minutes spent in an ungainly queue as learners, by and large, fail to connect with the drag lift.
-- Gwyn Topham, "Skiing is for show-offs", The Guardian, January 28, 2003
And she has been battling the perception that she is a maladroit campaigner prone to missteps amid New York's complex ethnic politics.
-- Martha T. Moore, "Clinton leans on old ideas, unveils new", USA Today, February 7, 2000
There was a time when the Left stood up for the underdog-for the worker against the boss, the maladroit against the polished, the lone individual against the state.
-- John Derbyshire, "Elian Nation - He makes our battlefield plain as day", National Review, May 22, 2000
Maladroit comes from French, from mal-, "badly" + adroit, from à droit, "properly," from à, "to" (from Latin ad) + droit, "right," from Latin directus, "straight, direct," past participle of dirigere, "to lead or guide."