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[key-jee] /ˈkeɪ dʒi/
adjective, cagier, cagiest.


or cagy

[key-jee] /ˈkeɪ dʒi/
adjective, cagier, cagiest.
cautious, wary, or shrewd:
a cagey reply to the probing question.
Origin of cagey
An Americanism dating back to 1890-95; cage + -y1
Related forms
cagily, adverb
caginess, cageyness, noun
careful, prudent, leery, chary.
open, forthright. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for cagy
Historical Examples
  • You'd be surprised at how cagy those officers got after a few of them had been captured.

    Spacehounds of IPC Edward Elmer Smith
  • But this time he was in wrong; I'd been dumped by him so often that I was cagy.

    Ashton-Kirk, Criminologist John T. McIntyre
  • He knows that he's followed, all right, and he's cagy enough to keep in the open and pretend to be aboveboard.

    On Secret Service William Nelson Taft
  • He's squintin' at me foxy out of them shifty eyes of his, cagy and suspicious, like we was playin' some kind of a game.

British Dictionary definitions for cagy


adjective -ier, -iest
(informal) not open or frank; cautious; wary
Derived Forms
cagily, adverb
caginess, noun
Word Origin
C20: of unknown origin
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 cagy



"evasive, reticent," 1896, U.S. colloquial, of unknown origin. Earlier in English dialect it meant "sportive."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for cagy



Shrewd; wary; pawky: a quiet, cagy observer

[1890s+; perhaps fr the expression play a caged game, ''be careful, keep your intentions concealed,'' attested in 1890s]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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