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Probably from marred +‎ -y.



mardy (comparative mardier, superlative mardiest)

  1. (chiefly Yorkshire and Midlands) Sulky or whining.
    He's a mardy child.
  2. (chiefly East Midlands) Non-co-operative, bad-tempered or terse in communication.

Usage notes[edit]

Used throughout Yorkshire and Midlands.

Frequently combined with other words forming common phrases such as "mardy bum", "mardy cow" and "mardy bugger" [1]. Sometimes shortened to "mard" particular when used in certain phrases such as "mard arse" or "mard on" (as in "he's got a mard on" to mean he's in a bad mood). Used throughout the east midlands and some parts of Yorkshire, particularly in Hull. Mournjy has the same meaning in most other parts of Yorkshire and east Lancashire, i.e. he has a mournje on.


  • 1913, D.H. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers, chapter 2
    “I wouldn’t be such a mardy baby,” said his wife shortly.
  • 1984 Food, Health, and Identity, Patricia Caplan [2] [1997 edition]
    When our Jonathan’s poorly...he’s mardy, very mardy....


mardy (plural mardies)

  1. (chiefly Yorkshire and Midlands) A sulky, whiny mood; a fit of petulance.
    • 2001, Creating a Safe Place, NCH Children and Families Project [3] [2003 edition]
      Sometimes my mum’s in a mardy and she says she doesn’t care about us — but she does really.