[kwiz-i-kuh l]


odd, queer, or comical.
questioning or puzzled: a quizzical expression on her face.
derisively questioning, ridiculing, or chaffing.

Origin of quizzical

First recorded in 1790–1800; quiz + -ical
Related formsquiz·zi·cal·i·ty, quiz·zi·cal·ness, nounquiz·zi·cal·ly, adverbun·quiz·zi·cal, adjectiveun·quiz·zi·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for quizzically

Contemporary Examples of quizzically

Historical Examples of quizzically

  • So, he avoided her eyes as she stood by the window regarding him quizzically.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • "About ten thousand," his neighbour answered, glancing at him quizzically.

    The Foolish Lovers

    St. John G. Ervine

  • He was looking at her quizzically, but with the liveliest appreciation.

    Alice Adams

    Booth Tarkington

  • "Maybe I hadn't better come any more," she said quizzically.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • "These are not the men who want to do something for Ireland," said the other, quizzically.

British Dictionary definitions for quizzically



questioning and mocking or superciliousa quizzical look
Derived Formsquizzicality, nounquizzically, adverb
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 quizzically



1789, from quiz "odd or eccentric person" (1782), of unknown origin (see quiz (n.)) + -ical. Related: Quizzically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper