Dictionary.com

arsy-varsy

[ ahr-see-vahr-see ]
/ ˈɑr siˈvɑr si /
Informal.
Save This Word!

adjective
wrong end foremost; completely backward: an arsy-varsy way of doing things.
adverb
in a backward or thoroughly mixed-up fashion: The papers are all filed arsy-varsy.
QUIZ
GOOSES. GEESES. I WANT THIS QUIZ ON PLURAL NOUNS!
Test how much you really know about regular and irregular plural nouns with this quiz.
Question 1 of 9
Which of the following nouns has an irregular plural form?
Also ar·sy·ver·sy [ahr-see-vur-see]. /ˈɑr siˈvɜr si/.

Origin of arsy-varsy

1530–40; probably alteration of Latin vice versa (see vice versa), with arse substituted to make a facetious rhyming compound; for Latin versa>varsy,cf. argal2

Words nearby arsy-varsy

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use arsy-varsy in a sentence

  • At first 't was mighty fine for Tom; he'd nought to do and good pay for it; but by-and-by things began to grow vicey-varsy.

FEEDBACK