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Definition of "dowdy" [dow•dy]

  • Lacking stylishness or neatness; shabby: a dowdy gray outfit. (adjective)
  • Old-fashioned; antiquated. (adjective)
  • A dowdy person; a frump. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "dowdy" in a sentence
  • "Her Aunt Mimi isn't beautiful, at least on the outside: she buries her features beneath thick powder, marches around in dowdy clothes and looks old beyond her years."
  • "They had been out at General Headquarters, living in dowdy little hotels in Arras ever since October, most of them."
  • "The galaxy of handsome women that formed the court of the Emperor had perhaps sent beauty somewhat out of fashion; for the high-born ladies who took their place were what we should call dowdy, and had nothing distinguished in their appearance."