adjective (shabbier; -est) Etymology: obsolete English shab a low fellow Date: 1669 1. clothed with worn or seedy garments <
a shabby hobo
2. a. threadbare and faded from wear <
a shabby sofa
b. ill-kept ; dilapidated <
a shabby neighborhood
3. a. mean, despicable, contemptible <
must feel shabby…because of his compromises — Nat Hentoff
b. ungenerous, unfair <
laments the shabby way in which this country often treated a poet — Paul Engle
c. inferior in quality <
shabby reasoning
shabbily adverbshabbiness noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • shabby — 1 Shabby, dilapidated, dingy, faded, seedy, threadbare refer to the appearance of persons and of things and mean showing signs of wear and tear. Shabby applies to persons and places and suggests a lack of freshness or newness in those items that… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Shabby — Shab by, a. [Compar. {Shabbier}; superl. {Shabbiest}.] [See {Shab}, n., {Scabby}, and {Scab}.] 1. Torn or worn to rage; poor; mean; ragged. [1913 Webster] Wearing shabby coats and dirty shirts. Macaulay. [1913 Webster] 2. Clothed with ragged,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • shabby — [shab′ē] adj. shabbier, shabbiest [< dial. shab, scab, scoundrel < OE sceabb, scab, scale: see SCAB] 1. run down; dilapidated; deteriorated [shabby surroundings] 2. a) showing much wear; ragged; threadbare: said of clothing b) wearing such… …   English World dictionary

  • shabby — (adj.) 1660s, from shab scab (now only dialectal, in reference to a disease of sheep), from O.E. sceabb (see SCAB (Cf. scab)), with sound change as described in SH (Cf. sh ). Cf. M.Du. schabbich, Ger. schäbig shabby. Shabby genteel run down but… …   Etymology dictionary

  • shabby — [adj1] broken down; in poor shape bare, bedraggled, crummy, decayed, decaying, decrepit, degenerated, desolate, deteriorated, deteriorating, dilapidated, dingy, disfigured, disreputable, dog eared*, faded, frayed, gone to seed*, mangy, meager,… …   New thesaurus

  • shabby — ► ADJECTIVE (shabbier, shabbiest) 1) worn out or dilapidated. 2) dressed in old or worn clothes. 3) mean and unfair: a shabby trick. DERIVATIVES shabbily adverb shabbiness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • shabby — index decadent, dilapidated, inferior (lower in quality), penurious, poor (inferior in quality), slipshod Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton …   Law dictionary

  • shabby — UK [ˈʃæbɪ] / US adjective Word forms shabby : adjective shabby comparative shabbier superlative shabbiest 1) a) old and in bad condition shabby clothes/furniture/buildings b) dressed in clothes that are old or in bad condition The children were… …   English dictionary

  • shabby — [[t]ʃæ̱bi[/t]] shabbier, shabbiest 1) ADJ GRADED Shabby things or places look old and in bad condition. His clothes were old and shabby... He walked past her into a tiny, shabby room. of the shabbiest and poorest areas of London. Syn:… …   English dictionary

  • shabby — shab|by [ ʃæbi ] adjective 1. ) old and in bad condition: shabby clothes/furniture/buildings a ) dressed in clothes that are old or in bad condition: The children were all so shabby and hungry. feel shabby: Linda felt shabby standing next to… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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