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

  • adjective Using the left hand more skillfully or easily than the right.
  • adjective Sports Swinging from left to right.
  • adjective Done with the left hand.
  • adjective Intended for wear on or use by the left hand.
  • adjective Awkward; maladroit.
  • adjective Of doubtful sincerity; dubious.
  • adjective Of, relating to, or born of a morganatic marriage.
  • adjective Turning or spiraling from right to left; counterclockwise.
  • adjective Rotating counterclockwise; levorotatory.
  • adverb With the left hand.
  • adverb Sports From the left to the right.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Having the left hand or arm stronger and more capable of being used with facility than the right; using the left hand and arm in preference to the right.
  • Characterized by direction or position toward the left hand; moving from right to left: as, a left-handed quartz crystal (one which rotates the plane of polarization to the left). See levogyrate and polarization.
  • Clumsy; awkward; inexpert; unskilful.
  • Insincere; sinister; malicious.
  • Unlucky; inauspicious.

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

  • adjective Having the left hand or arm stronger and more dexterous than the right; using the left hand and arm with more dexterity than the right.
  • adjective Clumsy; awkward; unlucky; insincere; sinister; malicious.
  • adjective Having a direction contrary to that of the hands of a watch when seen in front; -- said of a twist, a rotary motion, etc., looked at from a given direction.
  • adjective a morganatic marriage. See Morganatic.
  • adjective a screw constructed to advance away from the observer, when turned, as in a nut, with a left-handed rotation. An ordinary wood screw is right-handed.

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

  • adjective Of or pertaining to one who uses his or her left hand in preference to, or more skillfully than, his or her right.
  • adjective Intended to be worn on, or used by, the left hand.
  • adjective Turning or spiraling from right to left; anticlockwise.
  • adjective Awkward or maladroit.

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

  • adjective ironically ambiguous
  • adjective lacking physical movement skills, especially with the hands
  • adjective rotating to the left
  • adjective (of marriages) of a marriage between one of royal or noble birth and one of lower rank; valid but with the understanding that the rank of the inferior remains unchanged and offspring do not succeed to titles or property of the superior
  • adjective using or intended for the left hand
  • adjective (of marriages) illicit or informal


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • Well, then! rejoined I, your reasons shall be conclusive with me, and your sage counsels my rule. Lay down the line of conduct I am to adopt for the prevention of any left-handed catastrophe.

    - Lesage, The Adventures of Gil Blas of Santillane, tr. Smollett, bk 2 ch. 7

    September 13, 2008

  • For the southpaws shall inherit the Earth.

    September 13, 2008

  • Yes. :-)

    September 13, 2008

  • See surdo, cithog.

    February 17, 2010