American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Having prickles.
- adj. Prickling or tingling or smarting: a prickly sensation in my foot.
- adj. Causing trouble or vexation; thorny: a prickly situation.
- adj. Bristling or irritable: "In consequence, he became rebarbative, prickly, spiteful” ( Robert Craft).
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Full of sharp points or prickles; armed with prickles: as, a prickly shrub.
- Pricking or stinging; noting the sensation of being pricked or stung.
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. Full of sharp points or prickles; armed or covered with prickles.
- adj. very irritable
- adj. having or covered with protective barbs or quills or spines or thorns or setae etc.
“Oh, I know it now; it is what they call the prickly pear in the West Indies.”
“Luckily, Mary finds an unlikely champion in prickly Elizabeth Philpot, a recent exile from London, who also loves scouring the beaches.”
“Last week, coming into Morgan's room, staring at her for a full minute in prickly silence.”
“One of these, the species of cactus known as the prickly pear, the Queenslander has pretty nearly all to himself.”
“Day suggested the response was not unusual for Cima, whom he described as "prickly, unnecessarily challenging and confrontational" to colleagues over the years.”
“Griffin - who was sometimes faulted for what some described as a prickly personality - said Bolden has the experience, smarts and people skills for the job.”
“UKOK - Cathy Of Alexandria calls it "prickly" - but yes, I think I'm getting grumpy too.”
“After all, Nick Saban often is described as prickly, and, if given the choice, you'd much rather be seated next to the Armani Bear at a state dinner than either Urban Meyer or Paul Johnson, for whom the characterization "prickly" goes on one syllable too long.”
“Catch-n-keep is what the Caribbean folks called the prickly weed that grows in the wild down here.”
“Frank turned prickly, which is what feisty looks like when you don't like it, and almost immediately said "don't condescend to me" when”
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