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How to pronounce cloying (audio)

Dictionary definition of cloying

Overly sweet, sentimental, or excessively indulgent to the point of becoming overwhelming or distasteful.
"His cloying attempts to win her affection became increasingly annoying."

Detailed meaning of cloying

It describes a quality that can evoke feelings of discomfort or even annoyance due to its excessive nature. When something is cloying, it tends to elicit a sense of being overly saccharine, emotionally manipulative, or excessively sentimental, causing a sense of saturation or weariness. This term is often used to describe experiences, art, or expressions that might initially aim to evoke positive emotions but ultimately become excessive and overwhelming, detracting from their intended impact and leaving a lingering sense of insincerity or artificiality.

Example sentences of cloying

1. The cloying sweetness of the dessert overwhelmed my taste buds.
2. Her cloying compliments made me uncomfortable because they felt insincere.
3. The perfume she wore was so cloying that it gave me a headache.
4. The movie's cloying sentimentality left many viewers in tears.
5. The politician's cloying promises seemed too good to be true.
6. The air freshener's cloying floral scent filled the room.

History and etymology of cloying

The adjective 'cloying' has its etymological origins in the Middle English word 'cloysen,' which means 'to clog' or 'to fill to excess.' This Middle English term, in turn, is derived from the Old French word 'encloistre,' meaning 'to shut in' or 'to confine.' Over time, 'cloying' evolved to describe something that is excessively sweet, sentimental, or indulgent to the point of becoming overwhelming or distasteful. The etymology of 'cloying' reflects the idea of excess and confinement, as if one's senses or emotions are overwhelmed and 'clogged' by an overabundance of something, such as sweetness or sentimentality, leading to a sense of discomfort or distaste.

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Further usage examples of cloying

1. I couldn't finish the cloying syrup on my pancakes; it was just too sugary.
2. The romance novel was criticized for its cloying and unrealistic love story.
3. The cloying humidity in the tropical rainforest was oppressive.
4. The marketing campaign's cloying attempts to appeal to children were obvious.
5. The singer's cloying performance left the audience feeling unsatisfied.
6. The actor's cloying portrayal of the character made the film hard to watch.
7. The cloying nostalgia of the old photographs brought tears to her eyes.
8. The overly cloying dialogue in the play made it difficult to take seriously.
9. The dessert was ruined by the cloying addition of too much sugar.
10. Her cloying laughter grated on my nerves after a while.
11. The cloying, melodramatic music in the background detracted from the movie's impact.
12. The cloying sentiment in the greeting card felt insincere.
13. The cloying, saccharine sweetness of the love song made it an instant hit on the radio.
14. The cloying sweetness of the dessert was too much for my taste.
15. The movie's cloying romantic subplot felt forced and insincere.
16. Her cloying compliments made me uncomfortable.
17. The perfume's cloying scent lingered in the room for hours.
18. The singer's cloying ballad brought tears to some, but eye rolls to others.
19. The book's cloying sentimentality detracted from its story.
20. The politician's cloying promises sounded too good to be true.
21. The air freshener's cloying fragrance overwhelmed the car.
22. The marketing campaign's cloying slogans failed to resonate with consumers.
23. The cloying nostalgia of the reunion made it hard to enjoy.
24. His cloying attempts to win her back only pushed her further away.


overly sweet

Quiz categories containing cloying


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Multiple Choice Game

Multiple Choice

Opposite Words Game

Opposite Words

Same or Different Game



Spelling Bee


honeyed,mushy,overly sweet,sappy,sentimentalized,sugary,syrupy,treacly


saccharine, refreshing, invigorating, pleasing

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