Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

tidy

[tahy-dee]
See more synonyms for tidy on Thesaurus.com
adjective, ti·di·er, ti·di·est.
  1. neat, orderly, or trim, as in appearance or dress: a tidy room; a tidy person.
  2. clearly organized and systematic: a tidy mind; a tidy way of working.
  3. tolerably good; acceptable: They worked out a tidy arrangement agreeable to all.
  4. fairly large; considerable: a tidy sum.
Show More
verb (used with or without object), ti·died, ti·dy·ing.
  1. to make tidy or neat (often followed by up).
Show More
noun, plural ti·dies.
  1. any of various articles for keeping things tidy, as a box having small drawers and compartments.
  2. an antimacassar.
Show More

Origin of tidy

1200–50; Middle English tidi, tidy seasonable, hence good; cognate with Dutch tijdig. See tide1, -y1
Related formsti·di·ly, adverbti·di·ness, noun

Antonyms

1. messy, sloppy.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for tidy

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Before her, instead of the tidy supper-table, she was seeing the medicine-tray as she had left it.

    K

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • She brushed some dust from her habit, and made sure that her hair was tidy.

    Roden's Corner

    Henry Seton Merriman

  • So I had to put on her peignoir, and tidy her up, and arrange her hair just as I have done.

  • It was Madame Raquin who had to arrange the rooms and tidy up the shop.

    Therese Raquin

    Emile Zola

  • "If we teach them to be particular when they are young, they will be tidy when they are old," we were informed.

    Lotus Buds

    Amy Carmichael


British Dictionary definitions for tidy

tidy

adjective -dier or -diest
  1. characterized by or indicating neatness and order
  2. informal considerablea tidy sum of money
Show More
verb -dies, -dying or -died
  1. (when intr, usually foll by up) to put (things) in order; neaten
Show More
noun plural -dies
    1. a small container in which odds and ends are kept
    2. sink tidya container with holes in the bottom, kept in the sink to retain rubbish that might clog the plug hole
  1. mainly US and Canadian an ornamental protective covering for the back or arms of a chair
Show More
Derived Formstidily, adverbtidiness, noun

Word Origin

C13 (in the sense: timely, seasonable, excellent): from tide 1 + -y 1; related to Dutch tijdig timely
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 tidy

adj.

mid-13c., probably originally "in season, timely, opportune, excellent," from tide in the sense of "season, time" (see tide). Cf. Old High German zitig, German zeitig, Dutch tijdig, Danish tidig "timely." Meaning "neat and in order" first recorded 1706.

Show More

v.

"to make neat, set in order," 1821, from tidy (adj.). Related: Tidied; tidying.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper