Definition of shoddy in English:



  • 1Badly made or done.

    ‘we're not paying good money for shoddy goods’
    • ‘Unfortunately the problem of shoddy workmanship continues even today.’
    • ‘We can't say much about your shoddy workmanship, your poor literacy skills or your goldfish-like imagination.’
    • ‘They're not the rather shoddy efforts that are made today.’
    • ‘They are the ones who need to apologize for such biased and shoddy work.’
    • ‘Many years of shoddy work has resulted in the pathetic shape of city roads.’
    • ‘Over the years, players were not recognised for their contributions and complained of shoddy treatment.’
    • ‘I love all kinds of films, except the plotless kind with unconvincing acting, shoddy editing and duff music played on synths.’
    • ‘The preferred option being presented by the borough council is a shoddy deal.’
    • ‘If they don't act, they get accused of tolerating racism and shoddy intellectual thinking.’
    • ‘Many experts believe the toll would have been lower but for shoddy construction, corruption and government incompetence.’
    • ‘Corrupt authorities also gave permits for shoddy housing and other construction in the riverbed, enriching individual contractors at the expense of public safety.’
    • ‘Letters to the editor and corrections are big black holes into which complaints about shoddy journalism disappear.’
    • ‘The report was, in short, an incredibly shoddy piece of work.’
    • ‘Even then, homeowners often complain of shoddy workmanship.’
    • ‘Those interests may be ill-informed, based on shoddy reasoning or false axioms, but none of that matters.’
    • ‘Describing me, he refers to my shoddy suit and badly scuffed shoes.’
    • ‘It is abhorrent and deplorable both in its shoddy journalism and blatant personal assault on our artists.’
    • ‘Verbal aggression, insulting and rude behaviour, disregard for the rights of others, petty thieving and shoddy work were the norms.’
    • ‘Contractors in connivance with corrupt officials do shoddy work deliberately, so that they get a fresh contract soon for the job.’
    • ‘And get chummy with your local building inspector, whose job it is to spot shoddy workmanship.’
    poor-quality, inferior, second-rate, third-rate, low-grade, cheap, cheapjack, tawdry, rubbishy, trashy, gimcrack, jerry-built, crude, tinny
    careless, slapdash, sloppy, slipshod, scrappy, untidy, messy, hasty, hurried, negligent, cursory
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    1. 1.1 Lacking moral principle; sordid.
      ‘a shoddy misuse of the honours system’
      • ‘Historically, it has a shoddy pedigree of corruption and death.’
      • ‘Rather an abuse of parliamentary privilege to achieve a cheap and shoddy pay back for his mates.’
      • ‘Moreover, because everything was so public, the authorities began to look pretty shoddy.’
      • ‘We're not going to have the Government use shoddy, tawdry little tricks to drum up the notion of fear and then fail on competence.’
      • ‘That, given sufficient publicity some kind of audience will appeal for almost any event, no matter how shoddy or potentially immoral.’
      • ‘In short, while the proposal may have merit, the method of proposing it has been downright shoddy.’
      • ‘David thinks it's time to tear up the PC rule book and pull black men up on their shoddy behaviour.’
      sordid, Improper, low, mean, bad, wrong, evil, wicked, iniquitous, immoral, sinful
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mass noun
  • An inferior quality yarn or fabric made from the shredded fibre of waste woollen cloth or clippings.

    ‘the production of shoddy and mattress stuffing’
    • ‘Replacing cotton shoddy with this new fiber may help auto makers avoid the issue.’
    • ‘There are cotton shoddy mats and foams and absorbers.’


Mid 19th century: of unknown origin.