From Middle English ugly, uggely, uglike, borrowed from Old Norse uggligr (“fearful, dreadful, horrible in appearance”), from uggr (“fear, apprehension, dread”) (possibly related to agg (“strife, hate”)), equivalent to ug + -ly. Cognate with Scots ugly, uglie, Icelandic ugglegur. Meaning softened to "very unpleasant to look at" around the late 14th century, and sense of "morally offensive" attested from around 1300.
ugly (comparative uglier, superlative ugliest)
- Displeasing to the eye; not aesthetically pleasing.
- Displeasing to the ear or some other sense.
- Offensive to one's sensibilities or morality.
- Ill-natured; crossgrained; quarrelsome.
- Unpleasant; disagreeable; likely to cause trouble or loss.
ugly (countable and uncountable, plural uglies)
- (slang, uncountable) Ugliness.
- (slang) An ugly person or thing.
- (Britain, informal, dated) A shade for the face, projecting from a bonnet.
ugly (third-person singular simple present uglies, present participle uglying, simple past and past participle uglied)
- (transitive, nonstandard) To make ugly (sometimes with up).