Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


Linda's eyes came back from the mountains and met Katy's straightly.

And, as straightly, I tell thee that it is full time he were.

They sent for him at once, and Ralegh straightly taxed him with it.

She looked him straightly in the face, her dark eyes kindling.

Should he ask her straightly whether the note was intended for her or Nell?

The commissioner eyed the other straightly and the colonel hesitated.

She looked up, straightly and unflinchingly full into my eyes.

Yes—if I could only see my way and follow it straightly, resolutely, remorselessly!

"I think I am leaving again for Paris, madam," he looked at her straightly.

There were no tears in her eyes; she looked at him straightly and steadfastly.


mid-14c., "direct, undeviating, not crooked," properly "that which is stretched," adjectival use of Old English streht (altered, by analogy with streccan, from earlier streaht), past participle of streccan "to stretch" (see stretch (v.)). Meaning "true, direct, honest" is from 1520s. Of communication, "clear, unambiguous," from 1862. Sense of "undiluted, uncompromising" (e.g. straight whiskey, 1874) is American English, first recorded 1856.

Theatrical sense of "serious" (as opposed to popular or comic) is attested from 1895; vaudeville slang straight man first attested 1923. Go straight in the underworld slang sense is from 1919; straighten up "become respectable" is from 1907. Straight arrow "decent, conventional person" is 1969, from archetypal Native American brave name. To keep a straight face first recorded 1897; straight shooter is from 1928; straight-edge as a punk subculture is attested by 1987.


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.