- built cheaply and flimsily.
- contrived or developed in a haphazard, unsubstantial fashion, as a project or organization.
Origin of jerry-built
SynonymsSee more synonyms for jerry-built on Thesaurus.com
- to build cheaply and flimsily.
Origin of jerry-build
Examples from the Web for jerry-built
Why shouldn't creeds totter when they are jerry-built creeds?This Simian World
The house was new but jerry-built, reeked of drains, and swarmed with vermin.From Paris to New York by Land
Harry de Windt
I should say it was built on contract, and jerry-built at that.Windows (Fifth Series Plays)
From her way of saying it, you would have supposed it had been jerry-built last week.The Retrospect
It was, I perceive, a jerry-built scheme, run up at short notice.The Secret Places of the Heart
H. G. Wells
- (tr) to build (houses, flats, etc) badly using cheap materials
Word Origin and History for jerry-built
1869, in which jerry has a sense of "bad, defective," probably a pejorative use of the male nickname Jerry (a popular form of Jeremy; cf. Jerry-sneak, mid-19c., "sneaking fellow, a hen-pecked husband" [OED]). Or from or influenced by nautical slang jury "temporary," which came to be used of all sorts of makeshift and inferior objects (see jury (adj.)).