adjective, slov·en·li·er, slov·en·li·est.

untidy or unclean in appearance or habits.
characteristic of a sloven; slipshod: slovenly work.


in an untidy, careless, or slipshod manner.

Nearby words

  1. slovakia,
  2. slovakian,
  3. sloven,
  4. slovene,
  5. slovenia,
  6. slow,
  7. slow burn,
  8. slow but steady wins the race,
  9. slow but sure,
  10. slow cooker

Origin of slovenly

First recorded in 1505–15; sloven + -ly

Related formsslov·en·li·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for slovenly

British Dictionary definitions for slovenly



frequently or habitually unclean or untidy
negligent and careless; slipshodslovenly manners


in a negligent or slovenly manner
Derived Formsslovenliness, 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 slovenly



1510s, "low, base, lewd," later "untidy, dirty" (1560s), from sloven + -ly (1). Related: Slovenliness; also in this sense was slovenry (1540s), which OED reports in common use early 17c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper