Wonky /ˈwäNGkē / adj.
Definition: Wonky is an adjective with multiple meanings:
- Something that is off-center
- Shaky or unstable
- Something that isn’t working properly
Etymology: Though the word has been in use since the early 1900s, it is still commonly heard today. It is more of a slang word than a formal one. There is some debate about where the word wonky came from. Most believe that it is related to an old German prefix with a similar meaning: wankel-. Additionally, the Old English word wancol means shaky or tottering and may have some connections.
In a Sentence
Don’t sit at that desk; the legs are wonky.
The eyes in that portrait are wonky.
This steering wheel is wonky—it keeps pulling to the left.
Steady, Level, Sturdy