Meaning of “wary” in the English Dictionary

"wary" in British English

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uk /ˈweə.ri/ us /ˈwer.i/

C2 not completely trusting or certain about something or someone:

I'm a little wary of/about giving people my address when I don't know them very well.

More examples

  • All authors need to be wary of inadvertent copying of other people's ideas.
  • The legal system is full of snares for those who are not wary.
  • Tourists should be wary, as pickpockets are known to operate in this area.
  • Buyers should be wary of hidden costs when purchasing their holiday.
  • The teacher was wary of giving his pupils too much information at once.
adverb uk /ˈweə.rəl.i/ us /ˈwer.əl.i/

She eyed the dog warily, afraid it might jump.
noun [ U ] uk /ˈweə.ri.nəs/ us /ˈwer.i.nəs/

(Definition of “wary” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"wary" in American English

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us /ˈweər·i/

careful because you do not completely trust someone or something or are not certain about what you should do:

Teachers are often wary of standardized tests.

(Definition of “wary” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)