The definition of cantankerous is someone who is bad tempered, grumpy or looking for an argument.adjective
An example of cantankerous is a grumpy old man who lives on your street who is always watching the neighborhood kids to find something to yell at them about.YourDictionary definition and usage example. Copyright © 2013 by LoveToKnow Corp.
Origin: prob. < ME contakour, troublemaker (< Anglo-Fr < contec, discord) + -ous
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- Ill-tempered and quarrelsome; disagreeable: disliked her cantankerous landlord.
- Difficult to handle: “had to use liquid helium, which is supercold, costly and cantankerous” (Boston Globe).
Origin: Perhaps from Middle English contek, dissension (influenced by such words as rancorous and cankerous), from Anglo-Norman contec, possibly from Latin contāctus, past participle of contingere, to touch; see contact.
- can·tanˈker·ous·ly adverb
- can·tanˈker·ous·ness noun