Definitions

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

  • adjective Irritated, impatient, or exasperated; peevish.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Irritable; irascible; choleric; cross; petulant.
  • Synonyms Pettish, touchy, waspish, snappish, peevish, splenetic, captious, peppery.

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

  • adjective Fretful; peevish; petulant; easily irritated.

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

  • adjective Easily annoyed, irritable.
  • adjective Marked by impatience or ill humor.

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

  • adjective easily irritated or annoyed

Etymologies

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

[Alteration of Middle English testif, headstrong, alteration (influenced by Middle English -if, variant of -ive, -ive, as in natif, native) of Old French testu, from Old French teste, head, from Late Latin testa, skull; see teston.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English testif ("headstrong"), from Old French testu, from teste ("head") + -u. Compare modern French tête ("head"), têtu ("stubborn").

Examples

Comments

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  • D'you suppose this is related to testes? (cf. testicular and the brilliant testiculate)

    October 4, 2007

  • Don't think so, arby, though I'm not positive. I think testy is from the Latin (and later, Italian and French) for "head"--so "headstrong," more or less.

    There's an interesting word history for testis here.

    October 4, 2007

  • On the contrary, there's a proven correlation. Science said it, history proved it, and I vouched for it. The connection is so real, etymology doesn't know about it yet. But it's pretty much indisputable fact amongst educated people. Some groups have even organized their own religions around this unwavering truth. You bet your buttons, you can totally bank on it.

    October 5, 2007

  • That'll learn me. Never enter uselessness' Land of Madeupical Etymologies without a map.

    October 5, 2007

  • It's science!!

    October 5, 2007

  • Never enter uselessness' Land of Madeupical Science without a map.

    October 5, 2007

  • *unless you're trying an expeeryment.

    October 5, 2007