Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “shabby”

See all translations

shabby

adjective uk   /ˈʃæb.i/ us  

shabby adjective (BAD CONDITION)

C1 looking old and in bad condition because of being used for a long time or not being cared for: He wore a shabby old overcoat. Her home is a rented one-bedroom flat in a shabby part of town. The refugees were shabby (= wore old clothes in bad condition) and hungry.

shabby adjective (NOT FAIR)

C2 not honourable or fair; unacceptable: She spoke out about the shabby way the case had been handled. I felt the whole affair was a bit shabby.
shabbily
adverb uk   /-ɪ.li/ us  
shabbily dressed The hostages were shabbily treated when they came home.
shabbiness
noun [U] uk   /-nəs/ us  
(Definition of shabby from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of shabby?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “shabby” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

be as cold as ice

to be extremely cold

Word of the Day

Let’s celebrate! (words and phrases for parties)

by Kate Woodford,
December 17, 2014
​​​ With Christmas and New Year almost upon us, we thought it a good time to look at the language of parties and celebrations. First, let’s start with the word ‘party’ itself. To have or throw a party or, less commonly, to give a party is to arrange a party: We’re having a

Read More 

cinderella surgery noun

December 15, 2014
cosmetic surgery to the feet We have all heard of people having nose jobs, boob jobs and liposuction – but now a new trend growing in popularity in America: Cinderella surgery.

Read More