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characterized by a showy, pretentious, and often spurious display of artistic interest, manner, or mannerism.
a male given name, form of .
Contemporary Examples

Once she became a “pro”, however, she abandoned her arty ways and stuck to a more documentary style.
India’s Modern Eye Blake Gopnik July 16, 2012

Cosmopolis is too arty and abstract, even by Cronenberg standards, to become a commercial success.
‘Cosmopolis’ Suggests ‘Twilight’ Star Robert Pattinson Can Act Geoff Berkshire August 15, 2012

Historical Examples

He was only a baby; and she had left him to run about with arty and Catty as if he were a big boy.
The Judgment of Eve May Sinclair

They came as young as you, arty, and as weak as you, but no one ever made them do wrong.
St. Winifred’s Frederic W. Farrar

He linked his arm in arty Kane’s and the two walked along the Strand, discussing the permutations of human feeling.
The Intrusions of Peggy Anthony Hope

Nonsense, arty; the summer holidays will bring you round again.
St. Winifred’s Frederic W. Farrar

These foo lines comes from a umble but arty frend to command.
Springhaven R. D. Blackmore

“Tha’rt a knivey nuisance, arty Morel,” she said, sitting back.
Sons and Lovers David Herbert Lawrence

But, while perusing these two books, we have had an ‘umble and an ‘arty laugh in the depths of our ‘umiliation.
The Catholic World. Volume III; Numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. E. Rameur

First comes my country, then my family; but first and last—my arty!
Plays by August Strindberg, Fourth Series August Strindberg

adjective artier, artiest
(informal) having an ostentatious or affected interest in or desire to imitate artists or artistic standards

1901, “having artistic pretentions,” from art (n.) + -y (2); cf. artsy.


Pretentiously and self-consciously artistic; straining for esthetic effect: an artsy-craftsy little boutique on Nantucket (1940s+)


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  • Artily

    characterized by a showy, pretentious, and often spurious display of artistic interest, manner, or mannerism. Historical Examples How artily I wish I coud afford to foller his brillyant xampel! Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 93, December 31, 1887 Various The right honorable gentleman laughed ‘artily, it said, same as they say about royalty. Walking […]

  • Arting up

    the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance. the class of objects subject to aesthetic criteria; works of art collectively, as paintings, sculptures, or drawings: a museum of art; an art collection. See also , . a field, genre, or category of […]

  • Artio-

    a combining form meaning “even number,” used in the formation of compound words: artiodactyl.

  • Artiodactyl

    Zoology. having an even number of toes or digits on each foot. a hoofed, even-toed mammal of the order Artiodactyla, comprising the pigs, hippopotamuses, camels, deer, giraffes, pronghorns, sheep, goats, antelope, and cattle. Historical Examples The artiodactyl group must have quickly branched in turn, as we find very primitive hogs and camels before the end […]

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