or gam·ey

[ gey-mee ]
/ ˈgeɪ mi /
Save This Word!

adjective, gam·i·er, gam·i·est.
having the tangy flavor or odor of game: I like the gamy taste of venison.
having the flavor or odor of game or other meat kept uncooked until slightly tainted: The roast was still edible but was slightly gamy.
plucky; spirited.
lewd or suggestive; risqué.
gross or squalid; unwholesome.
Smoothly step over to these common grammar mistakes that trip many people up. Good luck!
Question 1 of 7
Fill in the blank: I can’t figure out _____ gave me this gift.

Origin of gamy

First recorded in 1835–45; game1 + -y1


gam·i·ly, adverbun·gam·y, adjective

Other definitions for gamy (2 of 2)


a combining form with the meanings “marriage,” “union,” “fertilization, pollination,” of the kind specified by the initial element: exogamy; plastogamy; allogamy; also forming nouns corresponding to adjectives ending in -gamous: heterogamy.

Origin of -gamy

Combining form representing Greek -gamía “act of marrying”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What does -gamy mean?

The combining form -gamy is used like a suffix with a variety of meanings. In terms from botany, it typically means “fertilization, pollination.“ In other contexts, -gamy is used to mean “marriage” or “union.”

The form -gamy is also used to form nouns related to terms ending in -gamous. It is often used in scientific terms, especially in biology.

The form -gamy comes from Greek -gamía, meaning “act of marrying.”

What are variants of -gamy?

While -gamy doesn’t have any variants, it is related to the form -gamous, as in cleistogamous. Additional combining forms of the same general origin include gamet-, gameto-, and gamo-. Want to know more? Read our Words That Use articles for the forms.

Examples of -gamy

One example of a word you may have come across that features the form -gamy is polygamy, “the practice or condition of having more than one spouse, especially wife, at one time.” Polygamy comes from Greek polygamía, which uses the equivalent form of -gamy.

The form poly- means “many,” from Greek polýs. Here, the form -gamy means “marriage.” Polygamy literally translates to “marriage to many (people).”

What are some words that use the combining form -gamy?

What are some other forms that -gamy may be commonly confused with?

Break it down!

The combining form bi- means “two.” With this in mind, what is bigamy?

How to use gamy in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for gamy


n combining form
denoting marriage or sexual unionbigamy

Word Origin for -gamy

from Greek -gamia, from gamos marriage
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