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See also: Spry



From British dialectal sprey, from Old Norse sprækr (nimble, lively) from Proto-Germanic *sprēkiz (lively), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)pereg- (to strew, jerk, sprinkle, scatter). Cognate with Icelandic sprækur (lively, spry), Norwegian sprek (lively, healthy), dialectal Swedish sprygg (brisk, very active, skittish). More at spark. Related to sprack, sprig, sprug, freckle.



spry (comparative sprier, superlative spriest)

  1. Having great power of leaping or running; nimble; active.
    • 2012 April 26, Tasha Robinson, “Film: Reviews: The Pirates! Band Of Misfits :”, in The Onion AV Club[1]:
      What follows is a bunch of nonstop goofery involving chase sequences, dream sequences, fast-changing costumes and an improbable beard, a little musical help from Flight Of The Conchords, and ultimately a very physical confrontation with a surprisingly spry Victoria.
  2. Vigorous; lively; cheerful.
    • 1992, Robert Rankin, The Antipope (page 68)
      The Captain folded his brow into a look of intense perplexity. 'You seem exceedingly spry for a man who demolished an entire bottle of brandy and better part of an ounce of shag in a single evening.'
      'And very nice too,' said the tramp. 'Now as to breakfast?'