Definition of moldy in English:


(British mouldy)


  • 1Covered with a fungal growth that causes decay, due to age or damp conditions.

    ‘moldy bread’
    • ‘She quietly reads a book, oblivious to the great pockmarks of peeling paint and disintegrating plaster of the moldy wall behind her.’
    • ‘Others found stale bread or mouldy tomatoes, or items a bit too near their ‘best before’ dates.’
    • ‘The earth by the Kramer monument burst asunder, and a bony, decomposing arm, covered with tatters of moldy, worm-eaten cloth, reached out of the ground.’
    • ‘Cool and rainy weather in late spring induced moldy conditions in the cells that caused much larval mortality.’
    • ‘Severely infected seeds appear shriveled, cracked, and elongated, and may be covered with a white, moldy growth.’
    • ‘It's like comparing stale, moldy, rancid bread with soggy, stale, moldy, rancid bread.’
    • ‘Human exposure to biological contaminants in the air of damp and moldy indoor environments is a challenge for toxicological research and risk assessment.’
    • ‘Indeed, the only food he could find, and which starvation caused him to digest, was mouldy crusts of bread covered in mouse droppings.’
    • ‘We never found out what was causing it, but I rather suspect that the carpets were mouldy from the damp.’
    • ‘He saw last weeks left over boiled potatoes, mouldy and covered with small dark flying insects.’
    • ‘How can the council say that this family are not a priority when they are living in mouldy, musty, damp conditions with a two-week old baby and a son who has asthma?’
    • ‘Jean-Baptiste Canelle, for that was his name, sat behind a table covered with moldy bread crusts, half burned candles, and beer-stains.’
    • ‘Beetles are frequently associated with poultry feed, preferring grain and cereal products that are damp, moldy and slightly out of condition.’
    • ‘That was the last thing I wanted to smell and I emptied my already rather empty stomach onto the damp, moldy floor.’
    • ‘Two large black wings spread to an impressive 20 foot wind-span, the black feathers glistening in the damp, moldy city air.’
    • ‘At home and in the field, the men around him had often complained of rotten meat and moldy bread.’
    • ‘We had to throw out many things which had just gone mouldy in the damp but that has at least meant that we can get to any place within the garage without having to climb over anything.’
    • ‘‘It was damp, it was mouldy, there was only one scrap of curtain,’ she says.’
    • ‘If a cork seems damp or mouldy at either end, this is not necessarily a sign of any wine fault.’
    • ‘A white or grayish powdery / moldy growth appears on the foliage, new shoots and buds.’
    • ‘It's shot in a clunky retro-futurist style, and the director declares himself influenced by Fritz Lang, filling his screen with eerie, gigantic hardware shot in mouldy, decaying, soft-focus sepia.’
    mildewed, mildewy, musty, mouldering, fusty
    blighted, smutty
    decaying, decayed, rotting, rotten, bad, spoiled, spoilt, decomposing, decomposed, rancid, rank, putrid, putrescent, putrefying
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Tediously old-fashioned.
      ‘moldy conventions’
      • ‘He loved it until he played a chess game with moldy old Uncle Hooya… and lost.’
      • ‘Forget the moldy old slide-show party.’
      • ‘They feel entitled to de-clutter their lives from those mouldy old ancestral obligations.’
      old-fashioned, outmoded, out of fashion, out of date, unfashionable, frumpish, frumpy, out of style, outdated, dated, out, outworn, old, former, dead, musty, old-time, old-world, behindhand, past, bygone, archaic, obsolescent, obsolete, ancient, antiquated, superannuated
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2British informal Dull or depressing.
      ‘evenings filled with moldy old shows’
      • ‘You can accept your moldy old science with its unanswered questions and stupid bland facts and its ‘rigorous analytical processes.’’
      • ‘Capn's Final Word: More jangly versions of the same old moldy folk tunes that everyone else in the coffee shop knows by heart.’
      • ‘And I'll be stuck slaving away in some moldy old courtroom, wondering ‘what if?’’
      • ‘The only sign of life there today came from a mouldy old caravan, all steamy windows and grimed with neglect, where a radio was playing Sunday morning music of the popular kind.’
      • ‘Not another mouldy old book to add to your ever growing collection!’
      • ‘I remember where the Kitchen is, and I know I'm sick of moldy old food we've got.’
      • ‘Now this is more fun than mouldy old CDs - we had more snow this morning, from around 7: 30 am onwards.’