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[teer-ee] /ˈtɪər i/
adjective, tearier, teariest.
of or like tears.
Origin of teary
First recorded in 1325-75, teary is from the Middle English word tery. See tear1, -y1
Related forms
tearily, adverb
teariness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for teary
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • There's a name on it but my eyes are so teary I can't make it out.

    Dandelion Cottage Carroll Watson Rankin
  • And Mehitable lifted her swollen, teary face from the pillow and drank it.

  • The slipper landed on Jo's head and she responded by raising rather a teary face.

    The Four Corners Abroad Amy Ella Blanchard
  • Then Wilbur, in the disordered kitchen, put himself squarely in the way of the teary mother.

    The Wrong Twin Harry Leon Wilson
  • So Evelyn went off up-stairs, after teary kisses and good-nights, and Maria was left alone with her father in the parlor.

    By the Light of the Soul Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
British Dictionary definitions for teary


adjective tearier, teariest
characterized by, covered with, or secreting tears
given to weeping; tearful
Derived Forms
tearily, adverb
teariness, 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 teary

late 14c., from tear (n.1) + -y (2). Related: Tearily; teariness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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