Definition of churlish in English:



  • Rude in a mean-spirited and surly way.

    ‘it seems churlish to complain’
    • ‘It is a record only the most churlish, or those with almost impossibly high expectations, could deem anything less than laudable.’
    • ‘If I have any churlish feelings at all about this new production, it is a sense of envy: it doesn't seem fair for them to be paid to have so much fun.’
    • ‘Now that I've had time to think about it, I feel pretty churlish about my reaction to Gale's happy news.’
    • ‘The parents of these churlish, raffish youths should be held responsible.’
    • ‘As soon as we are persuaded that we are lucky to be alive, the thought of complaining about quality of life becomes churlish, ungrateful.’
    • ‘Once you turn 30, if you chase someone to repay the tenner you lent them, you look mean-spirited and churlish.’
    • ‘Throughout his life Watson's conduct was unpleasant and churlish.’
    • ‘The empirical basis of his work is sound and it would be churlish to complain of the absence of any overarching theory.’
    • ‘It's a timeless display of good-time rock 'n' roll, and you'd have to be a churlish misery guts to claim otherwise.’
    • ‘But it would be somewhat churlish to focus too directly on the failures of the season.’
    • ‘I guess one should not be churlish about soft journalism; it does its bit to spread happiness and light.’
    • ‘But it seems rather churlish to criticise a president for lacking vision and then to ridicule him when he tries to be visionary.’
    • ‘But it would be churlish to be too critical following a good day's work.’
    • ‘It would surely be churlish to deny that this was a start.’
    • ‘It seems churlish to criticise referees, but his second half performance had to be seen to be believed.’
    • ‘Back at Balbirnie, it seemed churlish to forego afternoon tea.’
    • ‘Kids today are rude, surly and churlish - but not ours any more.’
    • ‘It just seems churlish for a writer to refuse to have their music used on an advert.’
    • ‘It seems churlish to quibble over the fact that there is no lamb.’
    • ‘Being pampered, of course, is one of the main reasons why people book into luxury hotels, and it would be churlish to resent it.’
    rude, ill-mannered, discourteous, impolite, ungracious, unmannerly, uncivil, ungentlemanly, ungallant, unchivalrous
    ill-bred, boorish, oafish, loutish
    mean-spirited, ill-tempered, unkind, inconsiderate, uncharitable
    ill-humoured, surly, sullen
    View synonyms


Old English cierlisc, ceorlisc (see churl, -ish).