adjective, ug·li·er, ug·li·est.
Origin of ugly
Examples from the Web for ugliness
And considering the ugliness rising in his native land, Forgács must be seen as a political artist, whether he likes it or not.In Hands of Hungarian Artist, Jewish Home Movies of the ’30s a Warning of Coming Holocaust|Daniel Genis|October 25, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I can see vulgarity and ugliness anywhere I want to look, and I can see it for free.‘Transformers: Age of Extinction’ Is an Empty Pit of Nihilism|Teo Bugbee|June 30, 2014|DAILY BEAST
If we aspire to that personally and legislate for it publicly, the ugliness will dissipate.In Gay Rights Fights, Bullies Love to Play the Victim|Tim Teeman|April 4, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The ideology of bigotry can be found all over Europe, in fact, and its ugliness is spreading like gangrene, especially in France.
All that is almost invariably the stuff of ugliness, violence, and disaster—the stuff of “unbeing.”
That, I take it, is the essence of beauty—not that I am learned in beauty, though I am an expert in ugliness.Francezka|Molly Elliot Seawell
I vainly try to get down upon paper the dreariness, the ugliness, shabbiness, un-home-likeness of a Roman street.Passages From the French and Italian Notebooks, Volume 1|Nathaniel Hawthorne
But alligators bear the palm for ugliness, size, and strength.The Andes and the Amazon|James Orton
He could only stand at his gateway, and look at the thing as it rose above the ground, fascinated by its ugliness.The Vicar of Bullhampton|Anthony Trollope
Every emotion tends to sculpture the body into beauty or into ugliness.Cheerfulness as a Life Power|Orison Swett Marden
adjective -lier or -liest
Word Origin for ugly
mid-13c., uglike "frightful or horrible in appearance," from Old Norse uggligr "dreadful, fearful," from uggr "fear, apprehension, dread" (perhaps related to agg "strife, hate") + -ligr "-like." Meaning softened to "very unpleasant to look at" late 14c. Extended sense of "morally offensive" is attested from c.1300; that of "ill-tempered" is from 1680s.
Among words for this concept, ugly is unusual in being formed from a root for "fear, dread." More common is a compound meaning "ill-shaped" (e.g. Greek dyseides, Latin deformis, Irish dochrud, Sanskrit ku-rupa). Another Germanic group has a root sense of "hate, sorrow" (see loath). Ugly duckling (1877) is from the story by Hans Christian Andersen, first translated from Danish to English 1846. Ugly American "U.S. citizen who behaves offensively abroad" is first recorded 1958 as a book title.
In addition to the idioms beginning with ugly
- ugly as sin
- ugly customer
- ugly duckling
- rear its ugly head