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cagey

or cag·y

[key-jee]
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adjective, cag·i·er, cag·i·est.
  1. cautious, wary, or shrewd: a cagey reply to the probing question.
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Origin of cagey

An Americanism dating back to 1890–95; cage + -y1
Related formscag·i·ly, adverbcag·i·ness, cag·ey·ness, noun

Synonyms

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careful, prudent, leery, chary.

Antonyms

open, forthright.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cagey

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • I expect clients to be cagey, to hold back information, and to lie.

    A Spaceship Named McGuire

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • It was wonderful how sort of patriotic and unselfish and religious and cagey he always was.

    Yellowstone Nights

    Herbert Quick

  • Theyve got Rawlings for a manager and hes one of the most cagey men in the game.

  • They've been drinking Blood all Morning and are feeling good and Cagey.

    People You Know

    George Ade

  • Arne Copeland was a cagey youngster; nobody influenced him when he made up his mind.

    Comet's Burial

    Raymond Zinke Gallun


British Dictionary definitions for cagey

cagey

cagy

adjective -ier or -iest
  1. informal not open or frank; cautious; wary
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Derived Formscagily, adverbcaginess, noun

Word Origin

C20: of unknown origin
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

Word Origin and History for cagey

adj.

"evasive, reticent," 1896, U.S. colloquial, of unknown origin. Earlier in English dialect it meant "sportive."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper