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[duhs-kee] /ˈdʌs ki/
adjective, duskier, duskiest.
somewhat dark; having little light; dim; shadowy.
Older Use: Chiefly Literary. having dark skin.
of a dark color.
gloomy; sad.
Origin of dusky
First recorded in 1550-60; dusk2 + -y1
Related forms
duskily, adverb
duskiness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for dusky
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Do you observe this red glow,—dusky, too, amid all the brightness?

    Other Tales and Sketches Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • An Indian, half hidden in the dusky shade, is gazing and wondering too.

    Main Street Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • In a little time, there was a crucifix on every dusky bosom.

    A Bell's Biography Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • As for George, he had withdrawn into the dusky shadow behind his father's chair.

    Biographical Stories Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • There against the outer wall stood a dusky ill-defined shape.

    Wilfrid Cumbermede George MacDonald
  • She stopped in the dusky starlight, and listened with her very soul.

    Salted With Fire George MacDonald
  • Then from the dusky cloud by the wall sounded a voice feebly protesting.

    Keziah Coffin Joseph C. Lincoln
  • He had his bow and arrows with him but no lance, and it was getting too dusky for hunting.

    Two Arrows William O. Stoddard
British Dictionary definitions for dusky


adjective duskier, duskiest
dark in colour; swarthy or dark-skinned
Derived Forms
duskily, adverb
duskiness, noun
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 dusky

1550s, "somewhat dark," from dusk + -y (2). Related: Duskiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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