cunning Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo
Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

Meaning of “cunning” in the English Dictionary

"cunning" in British English

See all translations

cunningadjective

uk   /ˈkʌn.ɪŋ/  us   /ˈkʌn.ɪŋ/
  • cunning adjective (CLEVER)

C2 Cunning people are clever at planning something so that they get what they want, especially by tricking other people, or things that are cleverly made for a particular purpose: a cunning plan/ploy He's a very cunning man.
cunningly
adverb uk   /ˈkʌn.ɪŋ.li/  us   /ˈkʌn.ɪŋ.li/

cunningnoun [U]

uk   /ˈkʌn.ɪŋ/  us   /ˈkʌn.ɪŋ/
the quality or skill of being clever at planning something so you get what you want, especially by tricking other people: We need to show some cunning if we want to defeat the enemy.
(Definition of cunning from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"cunning" in American English

See all translations

cunningadjective

 us   /ˈkʌn·ɪŋ/
skillful in planning and ready to deceive people in order to get what you want: a cunning scheme
cunning
noun [U]  us   /ˈkʌn·ɪŋ/
They made their way safely back through enemy territory by stealth and cunning.
(Definition of cunning from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
Translations of “cunning”
in Korean 교활한…
in Arabic مُحْتال…
in Malaysian bijak…
in French rusé, astucieux…
in Russian хитрый, коварный…
in Chinese (Traditional) 聰明的, 狡猾的,狡詐的…
in Italian furbo, astuto…
in Turkish şeytan, kurnaz, hinoğlu hin…
in Polish przebiegły…
in Spanish astuto, astucia, ingenioso…
in Vietnamese xảo quyệt, khéo léo…
in Portuguese astuto, engenhoso…
in Thai เจ้าเล่ห์, ฉลาด…
in German listig, klug…
in Catalan astut…
in Japanese ずるい…
in Chinese (Simplified) 聪明的, 狡猾的,狡诈的…
in Indonesian licik, pintar…
What is the pronunciation of cunning?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

“cunning” in American English

A blazing row: words and phrases for arguing and arguments
A blazing row: words and phrases for arguing and arguments
by ,
May 04, 2016
by Kate Woodford We can’t always focus on the positive! This week, we’re looking at the language that is used to refer to arguing and arguments, and the differences in meaning between the various words and phrases. There are several words that suggest that people are arguing about something that is not important. (As you might

Read More 

Word of the Day

galaxy

one of the independent groups of stars in the universe

Word of the Day

trigger warning noun
trigger warning noun
May 02, 2016
a warning that a subject may trigger unpleasant emotions or memories This is not, I should stress, an argument that trigger warnings should become commonplace on campus.

Read More