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thorny

[ thawr-nee ]
/ ˈθɔr ni /
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See synonyms for: thorny / thorniness on Thesaurus.com

adjective, thorn·i·er, thorn·i·est.

abounding in or characterized by thorns; spiny; prickly.
overgrown with thorns or brambles.
painful; vexatious: a thorny predicament.
full of difficulties, complexities, or controversial points: a thorny question.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON “THEIR,” “THERE,” AND “THEY’RE”

Are you aware how often people swap around “their,” “there,” and “they’re”? Prove you have more than a fair grasp over these commonly confused words.
Question 1 of 7
Which one of these commonly confused words can act as an adverb or a pronoun?

Origin of thorny

before 1000; Middle English; Old English thornig.See thorn, -y1

OTHER WORDS FROM thorny

thorn·i·ly, adverbthorn·i·ness, nounun·thorn·y, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for thorny

British Dictionary definitions for thorny

thorny
/ (ˈθɔːnɪ) /

adjective thornier or thorniest

bearing or covered with thorns
difficult or unpleasanta thorny problem
sharp

Derived forms of thorny

thornily, adverbthorniness, 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
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