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open to a free current of fresh air; breezy:
airy rooms.
consisting of or having the character of air; immaterial:
airy phantoms.
light in appearance; thin:
airy garments.
light in manner; sprightly; lively:
airy songs.
light in movement; graceful; delicate:
an airy step.
light as air; unsubstantial; unreal; imaginary:
airy dreams.
visionary; speculative.
performed in the air; aerial.
lofty; high in the air.
putting on airs; affected; snobbish:
an airy debutante posing for society photographers.
Historical Examples

Hood, on the other hand, is jocular in an airier and lighter-hearted fashion.
The Brighton Road Charles G. Harper

Percival gave it a good grip, and resumed, in an airier tone than ever.
Under False Pretences Adeline Sergeant

The French chain-bridge looked lighter and airier than the prototype.
Sir Walter Scott Richard H. Hutton

But the school was removed in 1872 to an airier district at Godalming.
Stories That Words Tell Us Elizabeth O’Neill

A curious kind of sweat, as white as snow and airier than the down on the wing of a bird, is beginning to show itself.
The Children’s Life of the Bee Maurice Maeterlinck

She preferred it to the embankment below the Temple; it seemed to her airier.
Happy Pollyooly Edgar Jepson

If I read fiction, let it be fiction; airier than hard fact.
One of Our Conquerors, Complete George Meredith

Or maybe I should say “veiling” instead of canvas—or something still lighter and airier.
Over Prairie Trails Frederick Philip Grove

The cooler and airier the place it stands in the better—freezing even is not objectionable when the salt begins striking in.
Dishes & Beverages of the Old South Martha McCulloch Williams

She was gentler to everybody, even to her parents, and chatted vivaciously, and walked with an airier step!
The King of Schnorrers Israel Zangwill

adjective airier, airiest
abounding in fresh air
spacious or uncluttered
nonchalant; superficial
visionary; fanciful: airy promises, airy plans
of or relating to air
weightless and insubstantial: an airy gossamer
light and graceful in movement
having no material substance: airy spirits
high up in the air; lofty
performed in the air; aerial
Sir George Biddell. 1801–92, British astronomer, noted for his estimate of the earth’s density from gravity measurements in mines; astronomer royal (1835–81)

late 14c., “of the air, made of air,” from air (n.1) + -y (2). Meaning “breezy” is attested from 1590s; that of “lively” is from 1640s. Sense of “vain, unsubstantial” is from 1580s. Disparaging airy-fairy is attested from 1920 (earlier in a sense of “delicate or light as a fairy,” which is how Tennyson used it in 1830).


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  • Airily

    in a gay or breezy manner; jauntily. lightly; delicately. Contemporary Examples Coakley airily suggested that maybe she could hold a fundraiser. The Kennedys React Lloyd Grove January 20, 2010 “Something to do with bankruptcy and an ancient honorary decree,” she said, airily. Freud’s Artistic Legacy Casey Schwartz January 24, 2011 Historical Examples God’s wrath must […]

  • Airiness

    openness to the air: the airiness of a balcony facing the sea. sprightliness of manner: a ballet marked by airiness and deft movement. snobbishness; affectation. Historical Examples But answering her banter he once caught an expression behind her airiness. If Winter Comes A.S.M. Hutchinson Stables and neat-houses were the perfection of cleanliness and airiness. In […]

  • Airing

    an exposure to the air, as for drying. a public discussion or disclosure, as of ideas, proposals, or facts. a walk, drive, exercise period, etc., in the , especially to promote health. the act of broadcasting on radio or television: The new comedy program will have its first airing this Friday night. a mixture of […]

  • Airish

    given to putting on airs. Historical Examples In secret she feared that Helena would be a trifle “airish,” and she felt that would be a pity. Dorothy’s House Party Evelyn Raymond

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