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English definition of “shy”

shy

adjective uk   /ʃaɪ/ us  

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/with people they don't know. The deer were shy (= unwilling to be near people) and hid behind some trees.Shy and modestAnxious and worried

shy adjective (LESS)

[after noun] less than: We're only £100 shy of the total amount.Lacking thingsScarce, inadequate and not enoughEssential or necessaryScarce, inadequate and not enoughLacking things

shy

verb uk   /ʃaɪ/ us  

shy verb (HORSES)

[I] (of a horse) to suddenly move sideways 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.Animal (non-human) behaviour

shy verb (THROW)

[T usually + adv/prep] old-fashioned informal to throw something suddenly, often in a sideways movement: Two small boys were shying stones at a tree.Throwing
Phrasal verbs
(Definition of shy adjective, verb from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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