[ kur-lee ]
/ ˈkɜr li /

adjective, curl·i·er, curl·i·est.

curling or tending to curl: curly blond hair.
having curls (usually used in combination): curlyheaded.
having a rippled or undulating appearance, as cut and finished wood: curly maple.

Origin of curly

First recorded in 1720–30; curl + -y1
Related formscurl·i·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for curly

British Dictionary definitions for curly


/ (ˈkɜːlɪ) /

adjective curlier or curliest

tending to curl; curling
having curls
(of timber) having irregular curves or waves in the grain
Australian and NZ difficult to counter or answera curly question
Derived Formscurliness, 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

Word Origin and History for curly



1770s, from curl + -y (2); earliest use is of hair. Related: Curliness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper