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brisk +‎ -y



brisky (comparative more brisky, superlative most brisky)

  1. (rare) Somewhat brisk; lively; energetic.[1]
    • c. 1590, William Shakespeare, Midsummer Night's Dream, act 3, sc. 1:
      Flute: Most radiant Pyramus, most lily-white of hue,
      Of colour like the red rose on triumphant brier,
      Most brisky juvenal and eke most lovely Jew,
      As true as truest horse that yet would never tire
    • 1841, William Harrison Ainsworth, Old St. Paul's, book 4, ch. 2:
      [H]e kept his eyes steadily fixed upon the ground, and walked at a brisky pace, as if desirous of getting out of the city as quickly as possible.
    • 1960 Jan. 31, "Bon Voyage, Cold Front," Miami News (USA), page 1 (retrieved 25 Oct 2011):
      Miami's latest cold front slipped on out over the ocean early yesterday, leaving behind more than a slight chill, brisky winds and a few showers.
    • 1960 Oct. 21, Muriel Lawrence, "Irritation Result of Weakness," Victoria Advocate (USA), page 3 (retrieved 25 Oct 2011):
      His secretary jumps when he rings; his brisky independent way with important customers is the envy of his sales staff.


brisky (plural form uncertain: briskys or briskies)

  1. (rare, probably obsolete, possibly nonstandard) A britchka, a type of horse-drawn carriage.
    • c. 1840, Edgar Allan Poe, "Why the Little Frenchman Wears his Hand in a Sling":
      Och! and wouldn't it be a blessed thing for your spirrits if ye cud lay your two peepers jist, upon Sir Pathrick O'Grandison, Barronitt, when he is all riddy drissed for the hopperer, or stipping into the Brisky for the drive into the Hyde Park.
    • 1841, William Makepeace Thackeray, chapter 17, in Memoirs of Mr. Charles J. Yellowplush:
      Well, the nex day came: at 12 the carridge-and-four was waiting at the ambasdor's doar; and Miss Griffin and the faithfle Kicksey were punctial to the apintment.
      I don't wish to digscribe the marridge seminary—how the embasy chapling jined the hands of this loving young couple—how one of the embasy footmin was called in to witness the marridge—how Miss wep and fainted as usial—and how Deuceace carried her, fainting, to the brisky, and drove off to Fontingblo.
    • 2010, Robin Adair, Death and the Running Patterer, →ISBN, Penguin, online edition:
      The captain called for his carriage. . . . [T]he platterer was glad that Rossi's choice of transport was a brisky, and not a smaller vehicle. . . . Two horses gave it power and its light body, made largely of woven wicker, gave it roominess and speed.


  1. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, second edition (1989)