Definition of gawky in English:



  • Nervously awkward and ungainly.

    ‘a gawky teenager’
    • ‘She constantly insisted that her height and slender limbs made her gawky and awkward, and for lack of a mirror had never seen the large blue eyes that were so captivating.’
    • ‘Teenagers are known for their gawky prejudices, which tend to change once they get into the real world.’
    • ‘He's fair-skinned and gawky while I'm bronzed and supremely athletic.’
    • ‘I was a horribly gawky and nervous teenager and speech did not come smoothly out of my mouth.’
    • ‘As a gawky, squawky teenager with no friends, desperate to distance herself from her parents, she took a part-time job in a library and devoured books, and not just the dirty ones either.’
    • ‘Those who didn't know him mistook him for a gawky teenager, though in point of fact he was twenty-nine.’
    • ‘He's intelligent, but gawky and socially inept, unable to communicate with anyone other than his family.’
    • ‘Chris was nearly eighteen and though he was tall, filled out with spiky black hair and handsome features, he still felt awkward, gawky, and ugly.’
    • ‘So I went out for lunch today with a group of friends and their friends and was disturbed to find myself feeling defensive and edgy which dragged me back about ten years to gawky teenage years of perpetual embarrassment.’
    • ‘Filled with uncommon self-belief and undaunted by his tall and gawky appearance, he sought out the Royal Theatre and tried to get a break as an actor, a dancer or a playwright.’
    • ‘Kids are gawky and awkward enough in junior high without forcing them to wear skinny ties and ill-fitting jackets while roaming like bison through a cramped gymnasium.’
    • ‘I might be the gawky gap-toothed kid who's not cool like everyone else at school, but as long as I like myself I'll be fine.’
    • ‘They're essentially gawky adolescents engaged in self-discovery.’
    • ‘The problem lies with the girls he chooses, as he shows a distinct preference for beautiful, if slightly gawky, younger women who aren't terribly self-confident.’
    • ‘With all the excitable glee of a slightly gawky teenager, she waves the bouquet above her head, showing it off to the rest of us like a trophy, the years visibly slipping away.’
    • ‘I just wanted to be like everyone else: one of the short girls who was good at doing cartwheels, graceful and cute as a kitten as opposed to a huge gawky awkward giraffe such as myself.’
    • ‘Through binoculars they're visible at all points of the compass; gawky, fragile, birdlike skeletons of metal hauling skywards monstrous slabs of concrete and steel.’
    • ‘At that time I was a gawky 18-year-old, from a small town - unused to and unaware of the big sophisticated city.’
    • ‘A gawky chap with a ponytail, rarely ever seen in a suit, he wanted to be different from those tough guys at the big anonymous corporate conglomerations.’
    • ‘And as usual, I turned into a goofy, gawky, tongue-tied idiot.’
    awkward, ungainly, inelegant, graceless, ungraceful, gauche, maladroit, inept, bumbling, blundering, lumbering
    socially awkward, socially unsure, unpolished, unsophisticated, uncultured, uncultivated, unworldly
    nervous, shy, bashful
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