Definition of manly in English:


adjectivemanlier, manliest

  • 1Having or denoting those good qualities traditionally associated with men, such as courage, strength, and spirit.

    ‘a manly torso of perfect proportions’
    • ‘What is astounding about his voice is that it retains the robust, manly quality of a true bass, every note straight from the diaphragm, throughout his range.’
    • ‘The name conjures images of manly men, displaying courage under extreme conditions, rejecting the artifice of language in favor of pure bodily experience.’
    • ‘The exercise of skill, mechanical know-how and autonomy certainly provided working class men with an important avenue to display their manly qualities.’
    • ‘Pete, however, seemed to take exception to being deprived of a chance to demonstrate his manly courage and kept shouting ‘In the water, in the water!’’
    • ‘Instead, he had to be manly, dignified and strong for the rest of the players.’
    • ‘By the antebellum decades, westward migration had become a symbol of manly courage and adventure.’
    • ‘I imagined the onlookers lined up, hoping to catch a glimpse of my manly torso.’
    • ‘Before she could even think, she was being lifted into the air by strong manly arms.’
    • ‘One quality she especially likes to reward is thus held to be manly courage.’
    • ‘‘We love to show off our manly strength,’ Ashton said as both he and Kaylen flexed impressive biceps.’
    • ‘Ian, take me in your strong manly arms.’
    • ‘He was powerfully built, tall and brown, with straight black hair to his shoulders, radiating a manly beauty and inner strength that was unearthly in its intensity.’
    • ‘This artist's lens makes the subject look more manly than Hurrell's but certainly no less perfect.’
    • ‘Many of your roles center on fairly macho characters - sort of grim, manly outsider types.’
    • ‘In fact, the female population would say that he had to be one of the strongest and most manly guys at Westmoore.’
    • ‘True manhood involved having a strong manly character exemplified by self-control and self-restraint.’
    • ‘The storyline is linear - easy enough for a child to follow - and the themes are clear and basic, touting manly courage, endurance, and noble suffering.’
    • ‘Our heroes are stalwart and manly.’
    • ‘Well he is the strong and manly captain you know.’
    • ‘But Chow has a strong, manly voice, and now that he's been given some English lines the audience can hear and appreciate that strong manliness.’
    brave, courageous, bold, valiant, valorous, fearless, plucky, macho, manful, intrepid, daring, lionhearted, heroic, gallant, chivalrous, swashbuckling, adventurous, stout-hearted, stout, dauntless, doughty, mettlesome, resolute, determined, stalwart
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (of an activity) befitting a man.
      ‘honest, manly sports’
      • ‘I will, however, be getting a large fireplace that I'll be able to chuck things into from the comfort of the sofa, an activity at least as manly as snooker.’
      • ‘I simply cannot wait to get out there and really make the most of the sun's light, baking my skin to a crisp as I pursue manly outdoor activities.’
      • ‘Informally, Pinchot had been working in a manly way for a long time by throwing himself into any outdoor activity that required great physical vigor.’
      • ‘It would, however, be totally inappropriate to speak in such terms of a male defendant who has been a distinguished exponent of a rugged, manly sport.’
      • ‘Apparently, he was still obsessed with the desire to learn the art of manly self-defense and concluded jujitsu offered him the best hope.’
      • ‘No matter that his wife was pregnant, those simply were not manly tasks and no true man would perform them under any circumstances.’
      • ‘Not every man knows his way around a shooting piece, but firearms are a manly art.’
      • ‘He was taught religious texts, philosophy and history, and had training in the manly arts such as riding, swordsmanship and archery.’
      • ‘Both the women and the foreman defended this practice because they said the work was heavier and therefore it was more manly work and should pay more.’
      • ‘I'm not considering the one sport which portrays itself as the most manly sport on the face of the earth.’
      • ‘While fencing is usually thought of as a manly sport, the women of the University of Victoria fencing club have a much different perspective.’
      • ‘Besides, the NFL is supposed to be manly sport for manly men.’
      • ‘Thell Torrence's name may not be familiar to the average fight fan but he, along with a couple of others, is the premier teacher of the manly art in the USA.’
      • ‘Boys thus engaged in simulated manly activities under the watchful maternal eye rather than in the traditional father/son apprenticeship role.’
      • ‘But his was a generation that also loved the outdoors, and the manly arts of hunting and fishing.’
      • ‘Kelly Garrett practices various manly arts in California and Mexico.’
      • ‘Most fathers try to instill a sense of the manly arts in their sons through athletics.’
      • ‘This is not an individual who is out there doing something strong or manly or anything of this type.’
      • ‘Most revealing was his role in founding with Theodore Roosevelt the Boone and Crockett Club ‘to promote manly sport with the rifle.’’
      • ‘He was thought of as a playboy whose main interests were dating beautiful women and engaging in manly sports like polo and competitive shooting.’
      virile, masculine, strong, all-male, muscular, muscly, strapping, well built, sturdy, robust, rugged, tough, hardy, powerful, brawny, red-blooded, vigorous
      View synonyms