What does ugly mean?

Definitions for ugly
ˈʌg liug·ly

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word ugly.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. uglyadjective

    displeasing to the senses

    "an ugly face"; "ugly furniture"

  2. surly, uglyadjective

    inclined to anger or bad feelings with overtones of menace

    "a surly waiter"; "an ugly frame of mind"

  3. despicable, ugly, vile, slimy, unworthy, worthless, wretchedadjective

    morally reprehensible

    "would do something as despicable as murder"; "ugly crimes"; "the vile development of slavery appalled them"; "a slimy little liar"

  4. atrocious, frightful, horrifying, horrible, uglyadjective

    provoking horror

    "an atrocious automobile accident"; "a frightful crime of decapitation"; "an alarming, even horrifying, picture"; "war is beyond all words horrible"- Winston Churchill; "an ugly wound"


  1. uglynoun


  2. uglyadjective

    Displeasing to the eye; not aesthetically pleasing.

  3. uglyadjective

    Displeasing to the ear or some other sense.

  4. uglyadjective

    Offensive to one's sensibilities or morality.

    He played an ugly trick on us.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. UGLYadjective

    Deformed; offensive to the sight; contrary to beautiful.

    Etymology: This word was antiently written ougly; whence Mr. Dier ingeniously deduces it from ouphlike; that is, like an ouph, elf, or goblin. In Saxon oga is terrour; and in Gothic ogan is to fear.

    If Cassio do remain,
    He hath a daily beauty in his life,
    That makes me ugly. William Shakespeare.

    O, I have pass’d a miserable night,
    So full of ugly sights, of ghastly dreams. William Shakespeare.

    Was this the cottage, and the safe abode
    Thou toldst me of? What grim aspects are these,
    These ugly-headed monsters? John Milton.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Ugly

    offensive to the sight; contrary to beauty; being of disagreeable or loathsome aspect; unsightly; repulsive; deformed

  2. Ugly

    ill-natured; crossgrained; quarrelsome; as, an ugly temper; to feel ugly

  3. Ugly

    unpleasant; disagreeable; likely to cause trouble or loss; as, an ugly rumor; an ugly customer

  4. Uglynoun

    a shade for the face, projecting from the bonnet

  5. Uglyverb

    to make ugly


  1. Ugly

    "Ugly" is a song by British girl group Sugababes from their fourth studio album, Taller in More Ways. Written and produced by Dallas Austin, inspiration for the song was conceptualised in the midst of reading negative comments about members of the band. The song released on 5 December 2005 in the United Kingdom as the second single from the album. "Ugly" is a midtempo pop song that contains lyrics about personality and body-image issues. It received comparisons to "Unpretty" by girl group TLC and "Beautiful" by Christina Aguilera. "Ugly" garnered positive reviews from music critics, many of whom praised the emotional and empowering concept behind it. The song peaked at number three on the UK Singles Chart. It achieved international commercial success, where it reached the top five in Denmark and New Zealand, and the top-ten the Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, the Netherlands and Norway. The song's accompanying music video is set in a warehouse in New York City, and features people of different ages and races showcasing their talents. The Sugababes have performed the song at the V Festival in both 2006 and 2008, and at the Indig02 in London, all of which received positive reviews from critics. "Ugly" has been used in schools within Wales to promote diversity and eliminate prejudice.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Ugly

    ug′li, adj. offensive to the eye: deformed: hateful: ill-natured: very severe, dangerous, as an ugly wound.—n. (coll.) an ugly person: a hood formerly worn by ladies as a shade for the eyes.—v.t. (rare) to make ugly.—n. Uglificā′tion.—v.t. Ug′lify, to make ugly.—adv. Ug′lily, in an ugly manner.—n. Ug′liness.—adj. Ug′some, hideous.—n. Ug′someness.—Ugly customer, a dangerous antagonist; Ugly man, the actual person who garrottes the victim in a confederacy of three, the others, the fore-stall and back-stall, covering his escape. [Ice. uggligr, frightful, uggr, fear; akin to Goth. ogan, A.S. oge, fear.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. ugly

    A term applied to a threatening heavy atmosphere, also to a head-sea. Also, to an ugly craft, as a mischievous foe, or a pirate.

Suggested Resources

  1. UGLY

    What does UGLY stand for? -- Explore the various meanings for the UGLY acronym on the Abbreviations.com website.

British National Corpus

  1. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'ugly' in Written Corpus Frequency: #4425

  2. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'ugly' in Adjectives Frequency: #784

How to pronounce ugly?

How to say ugly in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of ugly in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of ugly in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of ugly in a Sentence

  1. Valentin Balakhnichev:

    The federation believe the documentary was a provocation aimed at discrediting Russian sport, after watching the documentary we immediately began to doubt how authentic and believable the material they edited was. We see this film ... as a planned attempt to create an ugly scandal within Russian athletics and Russian sport in general.

  2. Margaret Cho:

    Ugly. Is irrelevant. It is an immeasurable insult to a woman, and then supposedly the worst crime you can commit as a woman. But ugly, as beautiful, is an illusion.

  3. Marcus Smart:

    We let the game come to us, it wasn’t pretty. It was a little ugly. But we came out with the win and that’s because we kept our composure and we kept with it.

  4. Proverb:

    A rich man is never ugly in the eyes of a girl.

  5. Eric Hoffer:

    Our greatest pretenses are built up not to hide the evil and the ugly in us, but our emptiness. The hardest thing to hide is something that is not there.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for ugly

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"ugly." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 24 Mar. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/ugly>.

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    irregularly slashed and jagged as if torn
    • A. tenebrous
    • B. lacerate
    • C. usurious
    • D. motile

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