- ill-tempered; grouchy; cross: I'm always cranky when I don't get enough sleep.
- eccentric; queer.
- shaky; unsteady; out of order.
- full of bends or windings; crooked.
- British Dialect. sickly; in unsound or feeble condition; infirm.
Origin of cranky1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for crankiness
Nursing helped to assuage injuries, fatigue, crankiness, and even sickness.The Bogus Breastfeeding Debate Over Nursing Older Kids
May 22, 2012
The test of "crankiness," then, lies in the adequacy of the advantage reaped.International Language
Walter J. Clark
Even Uncle Aaron lost some of his crankiness and seemed at times to be “almost human.”The Rushton Boys at Rally Hall
He belonged to C Company, and was a man subject to occasional fits of crankiness.Uncle Sam's Boys in the Philippines
H. Irving Hancock
But the legends to which my poor old uncle's crankiness have given rise really begin to get upon my brain.The Gateless Barrier
For one and a half years prior to admission her "crankiness" is said to have become much worse.Benign Stupors
- informal eccentric
- mainly US, Canadian and Irish informal fussy and bad-tempered
- shaky; out of order
- full of bends and turns
- dialect unwell
- nautical another word for crank 2
Word Origin and History for crankiness
"cross-tempered, irritable," 1807, from crank (n.) + -y (2). The evolution would be from earlier senses of crank, e.g. "a twist or fanciful turn of speech" (1590s); "inaccessible hole or crevice" (1560s). Grose's 1787 "Provincial Glossary" has "Cranky. Ailing sickly from the dutch crank, sick." and identifies it as a Northern word. Related: Crankily; crankiness.
Ben. Dang it, don't you spare him--A cross grain'd cranky toad as ever crawl'd. (etc.) [Richard Cumberland, "Lovers Resolutions," Act I, 1813]