Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of worthy
Meaning of worthy by Wiktionary Dictionary



    • ( RP ) IPA: /ˈwɜːði/, X-SAMPA: /"w3:Di/
    • ( GenAm ) IPA: /ˈwɝði/, X-SAMPA: /"w3`Di/
    • Rhymes: -ɜː( r )ði
    • Hyphenation: wor‧thy

    Etymology 1

    From Middle English worthy, wurthi, from Old English *weorþiġ ( ( not found ); "worthy" ), equivalent to worth +‎ -y. Cognate with Dutch waardig ( “worthy” ), Middle Low German werdig ( “worthy” ), German würdig ( “worthy” ), Swedish värdig ( “worthy” ), Icelandic verðugt ( “worthy” ) .


    worthy ( comparative worthier, superlative worthiest )

    1. having worth, merit, or value
    2. honourable or admirable
    3. deserving, or having sufficient worth
    Derived terms


    worthy ( plural: worthies )

    1. a distinguished or eminent person

    Related terms

    Etymology 2

    From Middle English worthien, wurthien, from Old English weorþian ( “to esteem, honor, worship, distinguish, celebrate, exalt, praise, adorn, deck, enrich, reward” ), from Proto-Germanic *werþōnan ( “to be worthy, estimate, appreciate, appraise” ), from Proto-Indo-European *wert- ( “to turn, wind” ). Cognate with German werten ( “to rate, judge, grade, score” ), Swedish värdera ( “to evaluate, rate, size up, assess, estimate” ), Icelandic virða ( “to respect, esteem” ) .


    worthy ( third-person singular simple present worthies present participle worthying, simple past and past participle worthied )

    1. ( transitive ) To render or treat as worthy; exalt; revere; honour; esteem; respect; value; reward; adore .
      And put upon him such a deal of man, That worthied him, got praises of the king [...] — Shakespeare, King Lear .
    Derived terms


    By Wiktionary ( 2012/04/25 02:38 UTC Version )


    Partly from worthy ( combining form ), and partly continuing Middle English -wurthe ( “-able” ), from Old English -wierþe ( “-able” ), from Proto-Germanic *werþijaz ( “worthy” ), from Proto-Indo-European *wert- ( “to turn, bend” ). Cognate with Dutch -waardig ( “-worthy” ), German -würdig ( “-worthy” ) .



    1. Of sufficient worth for; deserving of.
    2. Suitable or safe for; capable of enduring or able to bear; able to withstand.
      • Examples: airworthy; seaworthy; lifeworthy; crashworthy; stormworthy
    3. Able to be; fit to be; -able.
    4. Having the right, power, permission, or freedom to.

    Derived terms

    [+] English words suffixed with -worthy

    Related terms

Explanation of worthy by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. worthy of being chosen especially as a spouse

    2. having qualities or abilities that merit recognition in some way

    3. behavior worthy of reprobation
      a fact worthy of attention
    4. having worth or merit or value

    5. a worthy fellow
      a worthy cause
    1. an important, honorable person ( word is often used humorously )

    2. he told his story to some conservative worthies
      local worthies rarely challenged the chief constable

    Definition of worthy by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Worthy a. [Compar. Worthier ( ); superl. Worthiest.] [OE. worthi, wurþi, from worth, wurþ, n.; cf. Icel. verðugr, D. waardig, G. würdig, OHG. wirdīg. See Worth, n.]

      1. Having worth or excellence; possessing merit; valuable; deserving; estimable; excellent; virtuous.

      Full worthy was he in his lordes war. Chaucer.

      These banished men that I have kept withal

      Are men endued with worthy qualities. Shak.

      Happier thou mayst be, worthier canst not be. Milton.

      This worthy mind should worthy things embrace. Sir J. Davies.

      2. Having suitable, adapted, or equivalent qualities or value; -- usually with of before the thing compared or the object; more rarely, with a following infinitive instead of of, or with that; as, “worthy of, equal in excellence, value, or dignity to”; entitled to; meriting; -- usually in a good sense, but sometimes in a bad one.

      No, Warwick, thou art worthy of the sway. Shak.

      The merciless Macdonwald,

      Worthy to be a rebel. Shak.

      Whose shoes I am not worthy to bear. Matt. iii. 11.

      And thou art worthy that thou shouldst not know

      More happiness. Milton.

      The lodging is well worthy of the guest. Dryden.

      3. Of high station; of high social position. [Obs.]

      Worthy women of the town. Chaucer.

      Worthiest of blood ( Eng. Law of Descent ), most worthy of those of the same blood to succeed or inherit; -- applied to males, and expressive of the preference given them over females. Burrill.

    2. Worthy, n.; pl. Worthies A man of eminent worth or value; one distinguished for useful and estimable qualities; a person of conspicuous desert; -- much used in the plural; as, “the worthies of the church; political worthies; military worthies”.

      The blood of ancient worthies in his veins. Cowper.

    3. Worthy, v. t. To render worthy; to exalt into a hero. [Obs.] Shak.