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slug +‎ -ish



sluggish (comparative sluggisher or more sluggish, superlative sluggishest or most sluggish)

  1. Habitually idle and lazy; slothful; dull; inactive
    a sluggish man
    And the sluggish land slumbers in utter neglect. (Can we date this quote by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow?)
    • 1911: Ameen Rihani, The Book of Khalid, p.37
      He helps us to understand the insignificant points which mark the rapid undercurrents of the seemingly sluggish soul of Khalid.
  2. Slow; having little motion
    • 1913, Paul Laurence Dunbar, At Sunset Time
      We float upon a sluggish stream,
      We ride no rapids mad,
      While life is all a tempered dream
      And every joy half sad.
  3. Having no power to move oneself or itself; inert.
    • Woodward
      Matter, being impotent, sluggish, and inactive, hath no power to stir or move itself.
  4. Characteristic of a sluggard; dull; stupid; tame; simple.
  5. Exhibiting economic decline, inactivity, slow or subnormal growth.
    Inflation has been rising despite sluggish economy.


  1. So sluggish a conceit.


Derived termsEdit