Definition of cockeyed in US English:



  • 1Crooked or askew; not level.

    ‘cockeyed camera angles’
    • ‘‘I need to keep this job you know,’ she said with a cockeyed grin.’
    • ‘There was a cold furnace festooned with service pipes and otherwise nothing but cockeyed telegraph poles and loops of wire in a bare waste of ashes.’
    • ‘‘I bet it's not so long,’ he said with a cockeyed grin.’
    • ‘There is a cedar wreath with dried flowers leaning at a cockeyed angle against the cross.’
    • ‘With a cockeyed cap, huge black gown, diploma in hand and silly grin, many college graduates envision a ready-made, wonderful life awaiting them.’
    • ‘The figures in Graham's work often look cockeyed.’
    • ‘Looking at the assembly, it obviously was cockeyed, which would have caused uneven wear and tear on the seal over time, with ultimate failure.’
    • ‘She burst into the hovel, knocking the cockeyed door from its lone rusty hinge.’
    • ‘Her ponytail is cockeyed, and it makes her head look off, swollen slightly over her ear.’
    • ‘His usual cockeyed grin betrays the fact that he's being honorably discharged for coming out to his commanding officer.’
    • ‘With his day's growth of stubble, short black hair and cockeyed smile he seemed more like a rogue or highwayman than magician.’
    • ‘His cockeyed, comic leer will keep us from taking any situation too seriously.’
    crooked, awry, askew, lopsided, uneven, asymmetrical, to one side, off-centre, skewed, skew, misaligned
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    1. 1.1 Absurd; impractical.
      ‘do you expect us to believe a cockeyed story like that?’
      • ‘Most beneficiaries of this cockeyed system have the grace to keep their heads down and mouths shut.’
      • ‘It's the tale of Malcolm, an art school drop out who persuades his hapless friends to join his cockeyed crusade against the system.’
      • ‘He lacks customary deference to party elders (and to the media's own cockeyed definition of reality).’
      • ‘They are just a bunch of cockeyed optimists, those stock analysts.’
      • ‘His original proposition - cut taxes regressively, double military spending, shrink government and balance the federal budget - looked cockeyed from the start.’
      • ‘Well, one's first impression is that nature has played a cockeyed practical joke.’
      • ‘I would have thought that suburbanites would be the very last to indulge in such a cockeyed fanciful endeavour.’
      • ‘‘What needs to happen is this civic centre should be refurbished and what we don't need is some cockeyed plan put forward for another site,’ he said.’
      • ‘In this cockeyed world, only the market is truly democratic, a view as crazy as it is increasingly influential.’
      • ‘We might ask ourselves: If these ideas are so self-evidently cockeyed and reactionary, why do they keep advancing?’
      • ‘After 17 years of European style instrument making, he finally came up with a product, which is a hybrid mixture of discipline, practicality and Australian cockeyed optimism.’
      • ‘Just call me a cockeyed optimist.’
      • ‘As a cockeyed optimist with a cynical streak, I've got the best of both worlds.’
      • ‘I'm so afraid that he'll forget me, that it wasn't real, and that this will become just another nail in the coffin of my cockeyed optimism.’
      • ‘At this juncture, even a cockeyed optimist has difficulty seeing much hope.’
      • ‘Does this readiness to invest in so-called safety devices represent sheer barking madness or a rather admirable brand of cockeyed optimism?’
      • ‘The producer comes up with this cockeyed idea, and the screenwriter pretends to treat what the producer's saying as wisdom, just so he'll get the job.’
      • ‘It's this kind of muddled headed logic that seems now so typical of his cockeyed view on many issues.’
      • ‘It sounds sort of cockeyed, but dreams have to start somewhere.’
      • ‘Blogs open up new vistas for you and force you to consider sometimes cockeyed points of view that end up giving you more perspective.’
      absurd, preposterous, ridiculous, ludicrous, farcical, laughable, risible
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    2. 1.2 Drunk.
      ‘I got cockeyed’
      • ‘Why lounge around in a bar, spending money, when you could get cockeyed on the clock while dollars rolled into your pocket?’
      • ‘In the middle of filming of the movie, he arrived on the set weaving and cockeyed.’
    3. 1.3 (of a person or a person's eyes) having a squint.
    4. 1.4 Cross-eyed.


Early 19th century: apparently from the verb cock and eye.