See more synonyms for dizzying on Thesaurus.com

Origin of dizzying

First recorded in 1795–1805; dizzy + -ing2
Related formsdiz·zy·ing·ly, adverb


adjective, diz·zi·er, diz·zi·est.
  1. having a sensation of whirling and a tendency to fall; giddy; vertiginous.
  2. bewildered; confused.
  3. causing giddiness or confusion: a dizzy height.
  4. heedless; thoughtless.
  5. Informal. foolish; silly.
verb (used with object), diz·zied, diz·zy·ing.
  1. to make dizzy.

Origin of dizzy

before 900; Middle English dysy, Old English dysig foolish; cognate with Low German düsig stupefied
Related formsdiz·zi·ly, adverbdiz·zi·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for dizzying

Contemporary Examples of dizzying

Historical Examples of dizzying

  • A whirlpool caught the wreck, and there it eddied in dizzying circles.

    The Young Mountaineers

    Charles Egbert Craddock

  • The waves were lifting and dropping them in dizzying fashion.

  • Something suddenly ceased, leaving them in dizzying uncertainty.

    A Son Of The Sun

    Jack London

  • And then they were in a lift that dropped into the depths of its shaft with dizzying speed.

  • Don Rafaele would have been concerned for a bird in such a dizzying situation.



British Dictionary definitions for dizzying


adjective -zier or -ziest
  1. affected with a whirling or reeling sensation; giddy
  2. mentally confused or bewildered
  3. causing or tending to cause vertigo or bewilderment
  4. informal foolish or flighty
verb -zies, -zying or -zied
  1. (tr) to make dizzy
Derived Formsdizzily, adverbdizziness, noun

Word Origin for dizzy

Old English dysig silly; related to Old High German tusīg weak, Old Norse dos quiet
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 dizzying



Old English dysig "foolish, stupid," from Proto-Germanic *dusijaz (cf. Low German düsig "dizzy," Dutch duizelen "to be dizzy," Old High German dusig "foolish," German Tor "fool," Old English dwæs, Dutch dwaas "foolish"), perhaps from PIE *dheu- (1) "dust, vapor, smoke; to rise in a cloud" (and related notions of "defective perception or wits").

Meaning "having a whirling sensation" is from mid-14c.; that of "giddy" is from c.1500 and seems to merge the two earlier meanings. Used of the "foolish virgins" in early translations of Matthew xxv; used especially of blondes since 1870s. Related: Dizzily.



Old English dysigan, from source of dizzy (adj.). Related: Dizzied; dizzying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper