adjective, greed·i·er, greed·i·est.

excessively or inordinately desirous of wealth, profit, etc.; avaricious: the greedy owners of the company.
having a strong or great desire for food or drink.
keenly desirous; eager (often followed by of or for): greedy for praise.

Origin of greedy

before 900; Middle English gredy, Old English grædig; cognate with Old Norse grāthugr, Gothic gredags
Related formsgreed·i·ly, adverbgreed·i·ness, nouno·ver·greed·i·ly, adverbo·ver·greed·i·ness, nouno·ver·greed·y, adjectiveun·greed·y, adjective

Synonyms for greedy

Synonym study

1, 3. See avaricious.

Antonyms for greedy Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for greedily

meanly, miserly, cannily, parsimoniously, stingily

Examples from the Web for greedily

Contemporary Examples of greedily

Historical Examples of greedily

  • A stick of candy from Tom's pocket was greedily accepted by Jackie.

    The Dare Boys of 1776

    Stephen Angus Cox

  • He pushed the ham bone between the slats, and Job received it greedily.

    The Woman-Haters

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • He seemed again to be drawing in nourishment from all he saw, drinking it greedily.

    The Great Hunger

    Johan Bojer

  • Anything that related to the politics of Kansas the boy listened to greedily.

    The Boy Settlers

    Noah Brooks

  • They had clutched at him greedily, and he had repaid with an impertinence.

    Olive in Italy

    Moray Dalton

British Dictionary definitions for greedily


adjective greedier or greediest

excessively desirous of food or wealth, esp in large amounts; voracious
(postpositive foll by for) eager (for)a man greedy for success
Derived Formsgreedily, adverbgreediness, noun

Word Origin for greedy

Old English grǣdig; related to Old Norse grāthugr, Gothic grēdags hungry, Old High German grātac
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 greedily

Old English grædiglice; see greedy + -ly (2).



Old English grædig (West Saxon), gredig (Anglian) "voracious," also "covetous," from Proto-Germanic *grædagaz (cf. Old Saxon gradag "greedy," Old Norse graðr "greed, hunger," Danish graadig, Dutch gretig, Old High German gratag "greedy"), from *græduz (cf. Gothic gredus "hunger," Old English grædum "eagerly"), possibly from PIE root *gher- "to like, want" (cf. Sanskrit grdh "to be greedy").

In Greek, the word was philargyros, literally "money-loving." A German word for it is habsüchtig, from haben "to have" + sucht "sickness, disease," with sense tending toward "passion for."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper