What does awkward mean?

Definitions for awkwardˈɔk wərd

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word awkward.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. awkward(adj)

    causing inconvenience

    "they arrived at an awkward time"

  2. awkward(adj)

    lacking grace or skill in manner or movement or performance

    "an awkward dancer"; "an awkward gesture"; "too awkward with a needle to make her own clothes"; "his clumsy fingers produced an awkward knot"

  3. awkward, bunglesome, clumsy, ungainly(adj)

    difficult to handle or manage especially because of shape

    "an awkward bundle to carry"; "a load of bunglesome paraphernalia"; "clumsy wooden shoes"; "the cello, a rather ungainly instrument for a girl"

  4. awkward, clumsy, cumbersome, inapt, inept, ill-chosen(adj)

    not elegant or graceful in expression

    "an awkward prose style"; "a clumsy apology"; "his cumbersome writing style"; "if the rumor is true, can anything be more inept than to repeat it now?"

  5. awkward, embarrassing, sticky, unenviable(adj)

    hard to deal with; especially causing pain or embarrassment

    "awkward (or embarrassing or difficult) moments in the discussion"; "an awkward pause followed his remark"; "a sticky question"; "in the unenviable position of resorting to an act he had planned to save for the climax of the campaign"

  6. awkward, ill at ease(p), uneasy(adj)

    socially uncomfortable; unsure and constrained in manner

    "awkward and reserved at parties"; "ill at ease among eddies of people he didn't know"; "was always uneasy with strangers"


  1. awkward(Adverb)

    In a backwards direction.

  2. awkward(Adjective)

    Lacking dexterity in the use of the hands, or of instruments

    John was awkward at performing the trick. He'll have to practise to improve.

  3. awkward(Adjective)

    Not easily managed or effected; embarrassing

    That was an extremely awkward moment. Everyone was watching.

  4. awkward(Adjective)

    Lacking social skills, or uncomfortable with social interaction

  5. awkward(Adjective)

    Perverse; adverse; difficult to handle

Webster Dictionary

  1. Awkward(adj)

    wanting dexterity in the use of the hands, or of instruments; not dexterous; without skill; clumsy; wanting ease, grace, or effectiveness in movement; ungraceful; as, he was awkward at a trick; an awkward boy

  2. Awkward(adj)

    not easily managed or effected; embarrassing

  3. Awkward(adj)

    perverse; adverse; untoward


  1. Awkward

    Awkward is an album by Ty. It was released in 2001 on Ninja Tune records.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Awkward

    awk′ward, adj. clumsy: ungraceful: embarrassed: difficult to deal with: (Shak.) unfavourable: (obs.) froward.—adj. Awk′wardish.—adv. Awk′wardly, clumsily, embarrassingly, dangerously.—n. Awk′wardness. [Prob. Ice. afug, turned wrong way, and suff. -ward, expressing direction.]

British National Corpus

  1. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'awkward' in Written Corpus Frequency: #2554

  2. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'awkward' in Adjectives Frequency: #741


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of awkward in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of awkward in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Larry Niven:

    The Unexpected always comes at the most awkward times.

  2. The Journal:

    Using the 1.5-pound headset is about as awkward as sleeping on an airplane.

  3. John Alejandro King, a.k.a. The Covert Comic, www.covertcomic.com:

    You know what never gets awkward? Talking about things other people did that got awkward.

  4. Peter King:

    Today was extremely positive, there was not one negative moment. There was no awkward moment.

  5. Mary Lorraine Buckley:

    Husbands are awkward things to deal with even keeping them in hot water will not make them tender.

Images & Illustrations of awkward

  1. awkwardawkwardawkward

Translations for awkward

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • غير ملائمArabic
  • неприятен, неудобен, несръчен, неловък, непохватенBulgarian
  • maldestreCatalan, Valencian
  • nešikovný, neobratný, nepříjemný, nepříjemnéCzech
  • akavetDanish
  • Umstände machend, unangenehm, verkorkst, betreten, peinlich, ungelenk, umständlich, unbeholfen, ungeschickt, beklemmend, verdreht, tölpelhaft, tollpatschigGerman
  • αδέξιοςGreek
  • senaplombiga, konsterna, maloportuna, mallertaEsperanto
  • desmañado, torpe, delicado, embarazosoSpanish
  • بی دست و پا - به شکلی نامناسبPersian
  • kiusallinen, hankala, vaikea, piinallinen, yököttävä, kömpelö, vastenmielinen, tuskallinenFinnish
  • inconvenant, embarrassant, maladroit, gênantFrench
  • anástaIrish
  • भद्दाHindi
  • kínosHungarian
  • canggungIndonesian
  • klunnalegur, pínlegur, vandræðalegurIcelandic
  • maldestro, scomodo, delicato, poco opportuno, imbarazzato, impacciato, inopportuno, imbarazzante, difficile, poco maneggevole, goffoItalian
  • מוזרHebrew
  • ぎごちない, 不器用, 厄介なJapanese
  • ಪೇಚಿನKannada
  • 어색한Korean
  • inconcinnusLatin
  • tahangoiMāori
  • незгоден, терсенеMacedonian
  • genant, ongemakkelijk, onhandigDutch
  • pinlig, klønete, klumseteNorwegian
  • nieprzyjemny, nieśmiały, niezręcznyPolish
  • desconcertante, constrangedor, desajeitado, incómodo, bisonhoPortuguese
  • incomodRomanian
  • неловкий, неуклюжий, затруднительный, неудобный, неловкоRussian
  • genant, pinsam, besvärligSwedish
  • விகாரமானTamil
  • ఇబ్బందికరమైనTelugu
  • kullanışsız, beceriksiz, sakar, uygunsuz, garipTurkish
  • незграбнийUkrainian
  • عجیبUrdu
  • lúng túngVietnamese
  • ומגעלומפּערטYiddish
  • 尷尬Chinese

Get even more translations for awkward »


Find a translation for the awkward definition in other languages:

Select another language:

Discuss these awkward definitions with the community:

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:     


Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


"awkward." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 21 Mar. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/awkward>.

Are we missing a good definition for awkward? Don't keep it to yourself...

Nearby & related entries:

Alternative searches for awkward:

Thanks for your vote! We truly appreciate your support.