[ stur-dee ]
/ ˈstɜr di /

adjective, stur·di·er, stur·di·est.

strongly built; stalwart; robust: sturdy young athletes.
strong, as in substance, construction, or texture: sturdy walls.
firm; courageous; indomitable: the sturdy defenders of the Alamo.
of strong or hardy growth, as a plant.

Origin of sturdy

1250–1300; Middle English stourdi < Old French estourdi dazed, stunned, violent, reckless (past participle of estourdir < ?)
Related formsstur·di·ly, adverbstur·di·ness, nounun·stur·di·ly, adverbun·stur·di·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for sturdily (1 of 2)


/ (ˈstɜːdɪ) /

adjective -dier or -diest

healthy, strong, and vigorous
strongly built; stalwart
Derived Formssturdily, adverbsturdiness, noun

Word Origin for sturdy

C13 (in the sense: rash, harsh): from Old French estordi dazed, from estordir to stun, perhaps ultimately related to Latin turdus a thrush (taken as representing drunkenness)

British Dictionary definitions for sturdily (2 of 2)


/ (ˈstɜːdɪ) /


vet science another name for staggers, gid
Derived Formssturdied, adjective

Word Origin for sturdy

C17: from sturdy 1 (in the obsolete sense: giddy)
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 sturdily



c.1300, "hard to manage, reckless, violent," from Old French estourdi "violent," originally "dazed," past participle of estourdir "to daze," from Vulgar Latin *exturdire, which is presumed to be from Latin intensive prefix ex + turdus "thrush." Perhaps the notion is of thrushes eating leftover grapes at wineries and acting drunk (Italian tordo "thrush" also means "simpleton," and French has the expression soûl comme une grive "drunk as a thrush"). OED, however, regards all this as "open to grave objection." Sense of "solidly built, strong and hardy" first recorded late 14c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper