needy

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English nedy, nedi (necessitous), from Old English nēdiġ, *nīediġ ("of need, obligated, compelled"; found in the derivative nīediġnes (obligation)), from Proto-Germanic *naudigaz (of need, forced, compelled), equivalent to need +‎ -y. Cognate with Scots nedy, neidy (needy, necessitous, impoverished), Saterland Frisian niedich (miserable, poor, wretched, needy), Saterland Frisian nöödich (necessary, needful), West Frisian nedich (needful, needed), Dutch nodig (necessary), Middle Low German nōdich (necessary, urgent, by requirement), German nötig (necessary, needful), Danish nødig (necessary), Swedish nödig (necessary), Icelandic nauðugur (constrained).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /ˈniːdi/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -iːdi

Adjective[edit]

needy (comparative needier, superlative neediest)

  1. In need; poor.
    Needy people want to give too, but have few material goods to offer.
    • 2012 February 29, Aidan Foster-Carter, “North Korea: The denuclearisation dance resumes”, in BBC News[1]:
      Such monitoring has often been a sticking point in the past, amid fears that food aid might be diverted to the Northern elite - or its military - rather than the needy.
  2. Desiring constant affirmation; lacking self-confidence.
    It's emotionally exhausting to be around her because she's so needy.
  3. (archaic) Needful; necessary.
    • 1861, Isaak August Dorner, Patrick Fairbairn, History of the development of the doctrine of the person of Christ:
      It is the measure of things, and their time (that is, their measure, as to space and time), and yet it is above, and prior to, time: it is full in needy things, and overflows in full things; it is unutterable, innominable: it is above understanding []

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