swanky

[ swang-kee ]
/ ˈswæŋ ki /

adjective, swank·i·er, swank·i·est.

elegant or ostentatious; swank.

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Origin of swanky

First recorded in 1835–45; swank1 + -y1

OTHER WORDS FROM swanky

swank·i·ly, adverbswank·i·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

VOCAB BUILDER

What does swanky mean?

Swanky means fancy, stylish, or classy, especially in a showy or expensive way. It is often used informally.

Swanky can refer to something that is ostentatious (over the top) or something that is very elegant. Either way, the unifying element is fanciness.

Example: Anna doesn’t usually get a chance to eat at fancy restaurants, so she really enjoyed the gourmet food at the swanky office party.

Where does swanky come from?

Swanky is first recorded in English around the 1830s. It’s a combination of the older noun form swank and the adjective-forming suffix -y (commonly used to make verbs and nouns into adjectives, as in shine/shiny and juice/juicy).

Swanky is usually used in a way that’s a bit informal, especially when highlighting how fancy something is: Look at the swanky hotel. Did you really get into that swanky club? Wow, swanky new apartment! A lot of times, the swanky thing being described is nicer than the things the person describing it is used to. This means a person who can afford a lot of swanky things or go to a lot of swanky places probably doesn’t use the word. Funny how that works.

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What are some other forms of swanky?

What are some synonyms for swanky?

What are some words that often get used in discussing swanky?

How is swanky used in real life?

Swanky is typically used informally, and often to be a little humorous.

 

 

Try using swanky!

Which of the following sentences uses swanky incorrectly?

A. Our new office space is very swanky, with ergonomic chairs and glass walls.
B. We had to eat at a swanky restaurant that had wet floors and wallpaper peeling off the walls.
C. He looks so swanky in his three-piece suit.

British Dictionary definitions for swanky

swanky
/ (ˈswæŋkɪ) /

adjective swankier or swankiest informal

expensive and showy; stylisha swanky hotel
boastful or conceited

Derived forms of swanky

swankily, adverbswankiness, 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