shy Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary

Meaning of “shy” in the English Dictionary

"shy" in British English

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uk   us   /ʃaɪ/

shy adjective (NERVOUS)

B1 (shyer, shyest) nervous and ​uncomfortable with other ​people: He was too shy to ​ask her to ​dance with him. She gave a shy ​smile. Children are often shy of/withpeople they don't ​know. The ​deer were shy (= ​unwilling to be near ​people) and ​hid behind some ​trees.
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shy adjective (LESS)

[after noun] less than: We're only $100 shy of the ​totalamount.


uk   us   /ʃaɪ/

shy verb (HORSES)

[I] (of a ​horse) to ​suddenlymovesideways or ​backwards, ​especially because of ​fear: The ​horse shied at the ​fence. There's a lot of ​traffic on the ​road - I'm ​sure my ​horse is going to shy.

shy verb (THROW)

[T usually + adv/prep] old-fashioned informal to ​throw something ​suddenly, often in a ​sidewaysmovement: Two ​smallboys were shying ​stones at a ​tree.
Phrasal verbs


uk   us   /-ʃaɪ/
avoiding or not ​liking the thing ​mentioned: camera-shy work-shy
(Definition of shy from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"shy" in American English

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shyadjective [-er/-est only]

 us   /ʃɑɪ/ (comparative shyer, superlative shyest)
uncomfortable with other ​people and ​unwilling to ​talk to them: He was too shy to ​ask her to ​dance with him.
adverb  us   /ˈʃɑɪ·li/
She smiled shyly.
noun [U]  us   /ˈʃɑɪ·nəs/
They have no shyness about ​telling you what they ​think.

shyverb [I]

 us   /ʃɑɪ/
(of a ​horse) to move back ​suddenly, esp. from ​fear or ​surprise.
(Definition of shy from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“shy” in American English

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