[lawf-tee, lof-]

adjective, loft·i·er, loft·i·est.

extending high in the air; of imposing height; towering: lofty mountains.
exalted in rank, dignity, or character; eminent.
elevated in style, tone, or sentiment, as writings or speech.
arrogantly or condescendingly superior in manner; haughty: to treat someone in a lofty manner.
Nautical. noting a rig of a sailing ship having extraordinarily high masts.
(of fabric or yarn) thick and resilient.

Origin of lofty

late Middle English word dating back to 1400–50; see origin at loft, -y1
Related formsloft·i·ly, adverbloft·i·ness, nouno·ver·loft·i·ly, adverbo·ver·loft·i·ness, nouno·ver·loft·y, adjectiveun·loft·y, adjective

Synonyms for lofty

1. elevated. See high. 3. sublime. 4. supercilious.

Antonyms for lofty

2. lowly. 4. humble. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for loftily

Contemporary Examples of loftily

Historical Examples of loftily

  • Ah, they are of their insignificance so loftily unconscious.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • "That's all right, my boy," cried Yates loftily, with a wave of his hand.

  • "Enterprise and industries," answered Cousin Egbert loftily.

    Ruggles of Red Gap

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • "It is my intent to lead this company myself," he loftily informed the ruffler.


    Raphael Sabatini

  • "It was a matter of sentiment," said Madame Beattie loftily.

    The Prisoner

    Alice Brown

British Dictionary definitions for loftily


adjective loftier or loftiest

of majestic or imposing height
exalted or noble in character or nature
haughty or supercilious
elevated, eminent, or superior
Derived Formsloftily, adverbloftiness, 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 loftily



"exalted, of high rank," early 15c.; also "with a high purpose," from loft + -y (2). From early 14c. as a surname. Literal sense of "high" is attested from 1580s. Related: Loftily; loftiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper