or loon·ey, lun·y


adjective, loon·i·er, loon·i·est.

lunatic; insane.
extremely or senselessly foolish.

noun, plural loon·ies.

Origin of loony

First recorded in 1860–65; lun(atic) + -y2
Related formsloon·i·ness, noun



noun, plural loon·ies.

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for loony

Contemporary Examples of loony

Historical Examples of loony

  • I've known Jed all my life and I never can tell what loony thing he's liable to do next.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • I've done all kinds of loony things in my life and this attack is just natural, that's all.

    Kent Knowles: Quahaug

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • She said the neighbors all thought I was loony, anyhow, and I needn't prove it to 'em.

    Keziah Coffin

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • You ought to wake her up, Loony, and ask her what we are to do.

  • They explained that Drylyn was “sort of loony, anyway,” and the sheriff said, “Oh!”

British Dictionary definitions for loony


looney or luny


adjective loonier, looniest, lunier or luniest

lunatic; insane
foolish or ridiculous

noun plural loonies, looneys or lunies

a foolish or insane person
Derived Formslooniness or luniness, 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 loony

also loonie, looney, 1853, American English, short for lunatic, but also influenced by loon (n.2) and perhaps loon (n.1), the bird being noted for its wild cry and method of escaping from danger. As a noun by 1884, from the adjective. Slang loony bin "insane asylum" is from 1919. Looney left in reference to holders of political views felt to be left-wing in the extreme is from 1977. Looney Tunes, Warner Bros. studios' animated cartoon series, dates from 1930.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper