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See more synonyms for cloy on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to weary by an excess of food, sweetness, pleasure, etc.; surfeit; satiate.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to become uninteresting or distasteful through overabundance: A diet of cake and candy soon cloys.
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Origin of cloy

1350–1400; aphetic variant of Middle English acloyen < Middle French enclo(y)er < Late Latin inclāvāre to nail in, equivalent to in- in-2 + -clāvāre, verbal derivative of clāvus nail
Related formso·ver·cloy, verb (used with object)un·cloyed, adjective


See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. glut, sate, bore.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

nauseate, satiate, satisfy, surfeit, glut, suffice, weary, pall, sicken, stall, sate, disgust, gorge, jade, fill, stodge

Examples from the Web for cloy

Historical Examples

  • To cloy or surfeit is to gratify to the point of revulsion or disgust.

    English Synonyms and Antonyms

    James Champlin Fernald

  • But I shall tire you with a theme with which I would not wish to cloy you beforehand.

  • Over-sentimental and apt to cloy, it is eminently poetical and full of melody.

  • Yea but, said Carpalin, were it not good to cloy all their ordnance?

  • Or cloy the hungry edge of appetite, By bare imagination of a feast?

British Dictionary definitions for cloy


  1. to make weary or cause weariness through an excess of something initially pleasurable or sweet
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Word Origin

C14 (originally: to nail, hence, to obstruct): from earlier acloyen, from Old French encloer, from Medieval Latin inclavāre, from Latin clāvāre to nail, from clāvus a nail
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 cloy


"weary by too much, fill to loathing, surfeit," 1520s, from Middle English cloyen "hinder movement, encumber" (late 14c.), a shortening of accloyen (early 14c.), from Old French encloer "to fasten with a nail, grip, grasp," figuratively "to hinder, check, stop, curb," from Late Latin inclavare "drive a nail into a horse's foot when shoeing," from Latin clavus "a nail" (see slot (n.2)).

Accloye is a hurt that cometh of shooing, when a Smith driveth a nail in the quick, which make him to halt. [Edward Topsell, "The History of Four-footed Beasts," 1607]

The figurative meaning "fill to a satiety, overfill" is attested for accloy from late 14c. Related: Cloyed; cloying.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper