Definition of scary in English:



  • 1Frightening; causing fear.

    ‘a scary movie’
    • ‘It was a bit scary because the large ferries were steaming past us and at one point we were even dive-bombed by seagulls.’
    • ‘Teenagers may look a bit scary to us adults these days, but it's fashion nothing more sinister than that.’
    • ‘I attended the first day of the Whinash public inquiry and it was scary.’
    • ‘It's a scary movie that expertly plays on some traditional and commonplace fears.’
    • ‘I'd paid up immediately because the letter was a bit scary and the sum was so small I could afford to.’
    • ‘Manwarren said we live in scary times and music was one way to deal with the social ills now facing the country.’
    • ‘Since I'm basically carrying my life savings around with me, it can be a bit scary.’
    • ‘It can be a bit scary to travel on buses when there is anti-social behaviour.’
    • ‘He kept trying to frighten me - waiting until a really scary bit and then grabbing my arm suddenly.’
    • ‘It is also very scary when you realize that your country is run by a group of sociopaths.’
    • ‘The sight of ten-year-olds with assault rifles is scary and the exploitation terrifying.’
    • ‘Dozens of skulls hang overhead, making the longhouses a mysterious and scary place.’
    • ‘You only have to watch an exciting or scary movie to see how easily we can fool ourselves.’
    • ‘Some horrific things happen in it, to be sure, but until the end it's not a particularly scary movie.’
    • ‘The world is really in a state of flux and it is scary - we cannot afford our fear becoming a reason to hate.’
    • ‘It is a dark, and at times genuinely scary, tale set on the wild North Yorkshire coast in the 1700s.’
    • ‘If you have always wanted to be able to tell a scary ghost story, pop along to Gatton Park during half term and learn from an expert.’
    • ‘Some residents said they had not slept through the night due to scary sounds of gunshots and blasts.’
    • ‘I really got into gambling in a big way, and ended up playing blackjack with some pretty scary people, but it was a riot.’
    • ‘It was scary for the children as well when everything was in darkness.’
    frightening, scaring, hair-raising, terrifying, petrifying, spine-chilling, blood-curdling, chilling, horrifying, alarming, appalling, daunting, formidable, fearsome, nerve-racking, unnerving
    eerie, sinister
    creepy, spine-tingling, spooky, hairy
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    1. 1.1Uncannily striking or surprising.
      ‘it was scary the way they bonded with each other’
      • ‘I couldn't be in love so soon… it was a scary thought.’
      • ‘It sounded posh enough, although I suspected the prices might be a bit scary.’
      • ‘I can't think why anyone would want to attack her - that's what makes it more scary.’
      • ‘That is really a scary thought when you think about our founding fathers.’