Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Very cautious; wary.
  • adjective Not giving or expending freely; sparing.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Careful; disposed to cherish with care; cautious: often with of.
  • Sparing; not lavish; not disposed to give freely; frugal: absolute or with of: as, chary of compliments; chary of favors.
  • Charily; carefully.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Careful; wary; cautious; not rash, or reckless.
  • adjective Saving; frugal; sparing; not spendthrift; -- often used with of.
  • adjective Fastidious; picky; choosy.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective obsolete Sad; sorrowful; grievous.
  • adjective Disposed to cherish with care; careful.
  • adjective Cautious; wary; shy.
  • adjective Sparing; not lavish; not disposed to give freely; frugal; ungenerous.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective characterized by great caution and wariness

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English chari, careful, sorrowful, from Old English cearig, sorrowful, from cearu, sorrow; see care.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Old English ċeariġ ("careful, sorrowful, pensive, wary, chary, anxious, grievous, dire"), from Proto-Germanic *karagaz (“anxious, sad”), from Proto-Indo-European *ǵār- (“voice, exclamation”), equivalent to care +‎ -y. Cognate with Dutch karig ("scant, sparing, austere"), German karg ("meagre, barren, poor") and Norwegian karrig ("meagre, barren, poor"). More at care.

Examples

  • The Telangana JAC district convenor Dr. K.naka chary and Co,. convener, K. Rangaraju and a host of other leaders took part.

    The Hindu - Front Page

  • Maybe they are, in some strange way, but I'll bet Sy hersh really said, "chary", or even "wary".

    Think Progress

  • Maybe they are, in some strange way, but I'll bet Sy hersh really said, "chary", or even "wary".

    Think Progress

  • This year, six students went that far until stumped by the words "chary," "nadir" and "yamen" in the next three rounds.

    Times Leader News

  • This year, six students went that far until stumped by the words "chary," "nadir" and "yamen" in the next three rounds.

    Times Leader News

  • Maybe they are, in some strange way, but I'll bet Sy hersh really said, "chary", or even "wary".

    Think Progress

  • Maybe they are, in some strange way, but I'll bet Sy hersh really said, "chary", or even "wary".

    Think Progress

  • Maybe they are, in some strange way, but I'll bet Sy hersh really said, "chary", or even "wary".

    Think Progress

  • But yes, good of Prof. Adler, who I hope will be a little chary of Althousian pseudoreality in future.

    The Volokh Conspiracy » Taking the Washington Post to School

  • Some of us are chary of giving every stranger in ping-shot a pretext for striking up a conversation.

    Digital Signalling

Comments

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  • ADJECTIVE: 1. Very cautious; wary: was chary of the risks involved. 2. Not giving or expending freely; sparing: was chary of compliments.

    ETYMOLOGY: Middle English chari, careful, sorrowful, from Old English cearig, sorrowful, from cearu, sorrow. See care.

    OTHER FORMS: charily —ADVERB

    chariness —NOUN

    July 9, 2007

  • Fans of the Dark Tower series may be reminded of charyou tree - meaning either 'Come, reap' or 'death for you, life for our crops'. Dark Tower Wiki

    July 9, 2007

  • One should nevertheless avoid hackneyed quotations, even though they be the words of the great. Remembering that quotation is, after all, only adopting for the time being some article of apparel belonging to another, one should be chary of dressing oneself in cast-off clothing.

    (John C. Dow)

    March 21, 2008