Try Our Apps


The Best Internet Slang


[krab-ee] /ˈkræb i/
adjective, crabbier, crabbiest.
Informal. grouchy; ill-natured; irritable; peevish.
Origin of crabby
First recorded in 1540-50; crab3 + -y1
Related forms
crabbily, adverb
crabbiness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for crabby
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • When the latter arrived he seemed in a crabby frame of mind.

  • Let us go downstairs after old crabby is to bed and play some trick on him.

    The Putnam Hall Rivals Arthur M. Winfield
  • crabby—old crabby Tompkins, a trapper, is buried in the sand on the Frazer.

    The Hunted Woman James Oliver Curwood
  • You know, you crabby dear, you wouldn't neglect an old dog or an old pony after it had served you.

    A Dream of the North Sea

    James Runciman
  • There comes a time when a woman has to make up her mind to choose between being called a 'dear old soul' or a 'crabby old thing.'

  • Time was getting short, and it was no use wasting time on my crabby landlady.

    My Friend Smith Talbot Baines Reed
  • Accordingly the Hermit exerted himself to please, and it would really have taken more than three crabby boys to resist him.

    A Little Bush Maid Mary Grant Bruce
British Dictionary definitions for crabby


adjective -bier, -biest
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for crabby

1520s, in now-obsolete sense "crooked, gnarled, rough," from extended sense of crab (n.1) + -y (2). Meaning "disagreeable, sour, peevish" is attested from 1776, American English. Both senses were found earlier in crabbed.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for crabby

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for crabby

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for crabby