[ gaw-dee ]
/ ˈgɔ di /

adjective, gaud·i·er, gaud·i·est.

brilliantly or excessively showy: gaudy plumage.
cheaply showy in a tasteless way; flashy.
ostentatiously ornamented; garish.


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Origin of gaudy

1520–30; orig. attributive use of gaudy2; later taken as a derivative of gaud


2 tawdry, loud; conspicuous, obvious. Gaudy, flashy, garish, showy agree in the idea of conspicuousness and, often, bad taste. That which is gaudy challenges the eye, as by brilliant colors or evident cost, and is not in good taste: a gaudy hat. Flashy suggests insistent and vulgar display, in rather a sporty manner: a flashy necktie. Garish suggests a glaring brightness, or crude vividness of color, and too much ornamentation: garish decorations. Showy applies to that which is strikingly conspicuous, but not necessarily offensive to good taste: a garden of showy flowers; a showy dress.


gaud·i·ly, adverbgaud·i·ness, nounun·gaud·i·ly, adverbun·gaud·i·ness, noun

Definition for gaudy (2 of 2)

[ gaw-dee ]
/ ˈgɔ di /

noun, plural gaud·ies. British.

a festival or celebration, especially an annual college feast.

Origin of gaudy

1400–50; late Middle English < Latin gaudium joy, delight Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for gaudy

British Dictionary definitions for gaudy (1 of 2)

/ (ˈɡɔːdɪ) /

adjective gaudier or gaudiest

gay, bright, or colourful in a crude or vulgar manner; garish

Derived forms of gaudy

gaudily, adverbgaudiness, noun

Word Origin for gaudy

C16: from gaud

British Dictionary definitions for gaudy (2 of 2)

/ (ˈɡɔːdɪ) /

noun plural gaudies

British a celebratory festival or feast held at some schools and colleges

Word Origin for gaudy

C16: from Latin gaudium joy, from gaudēre to rejoice
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