Definitions

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

  • adjective Poorly brought up; ill-bred.
  • adjective Of mixed breed; not thoroughbred.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Of inferior breeding or manners; vulgar. Not pure-bred or -blooded: as, an underbred horse.

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

  • adjective Not thoroughly bred; ill-bred.

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

  • adjective of inferior breeding
  • adjective lacking in manners or finesse

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

  • adjective (of persons) lacking in refinement or grace
  • adjective of inferior or mixed breed

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

under- +‎ bred

Examples

  • 'I know it is wrong and it is cruel, and it is worse than wrong and cruel, it is what you English call underbred, to be so individually disagreeable, but this grievance of mine has been weighing very heavily on my heart, and

    Lord Kilgobbin

  • It was exactly one of the speeches Molly had disliked him for before; and delivered, too, in that kind of underbred manner which showed that it was meant to convey a personal compliment.

    Wives and Daughters

  • Nor will I again torment you about that very underbred woman who inhabits the same house, and who every where boasts an intimacy with its two ladies, that is heard with general astonishment: nor yet upon another, and far more important topic, will I now touch, – the present evening recreation at Mrs. Berlinton's.

    Camilla

  • The inconsiderate facility with which she had wandered about with a person so little known to her, so underbred, and so forward, appeared now to herself inexcusable; and she determined, if but spared this dreadful punishment, to pass the whole of her future life in unremitting caution.

    Camilla

  • He tells us that, for a long while at least, he had been unacquainted with the kind of society, the idle, useless underbred society, of watering-places.

    Saint Ronan's Well

  • Behind a long table, on which were several books, sat a smart underbred-looking man, wearing his own hair tied in a club, and who, from the quire of paper laid before him, and the pen which he handled at my entrance, seemed prepared to officiate as clerk.

    Redgauntlet

  • Margot Tennant, an aristocratic tourist who met him at Cairo, observed, “Though a little underbred, he is not at all vulgar, and though arrogant, is not vain; but he is either way very stupid or very clever; and never gives himself away.”

    Three Empires on the Nile

  • Margot Tennant, an aristocratic tourist who met him at Cairo, observed, “Though a little underbred, he is not at all vulgar, and though arrogant, is not vain; but he is either way very stupid or very clever; and never gives himself away.”

    Three Empires on the Nile

  • Margot Tennant, an aristocratic tourist who met him at Cairo, observed, “Though a little underbred, he is not at all vulgar, and though arrogant, is not vain; but he is either way very stupid or very clever; and never gives himself away.”

    Three Empires on the Nile

  • She pronounced the quiet little painter a pert, little, obtrusive, underbred creature.

    The Newcomes

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