Definition of chilly adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈtʃɪli//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈtʃɪli//
    (chillier, chilliest)
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  1. 1(especially of the weather or a place, but also of people) too cold to be comfortable It's chilly today. I was feeling chilly. Synonymscoldcool freezing chilly lukewarm tepidThese words all describe somebody/​something that has a low temperature.cold having a temperature that is lower than usual or lower than the human body; (of food or drink) not heated; cooled after being cooked:I’m cold. Turn the heating up. Outside it was bitterly cold. a cold wind hot and cold water It’s cold chicken for lunch.cool (often approving) fairly cold, especially in a pleasant way:a long cool drink We found a cool place to sit.freezing extremely cold; having a temperature below 0° Celsius:It’s absolutely freezing outside. I’m freezing!chilly (rather informal) too cold to be comfortable:Bring a coat. It might turn chilly later.lukewarm (often disapproving) slightly warm, sometimes in an unpleasant way:Her coffee was now lukewarm.tepid (often disapproving) slightly warm, sometimes in an unpleasant way:a jug of tepid waterlukewarm or tepid? There is really no difference in meaning or use between these words.Patterns to feel/​get cold/​cool/​chilly cold/​cool/​freezing/​chilly air/​weather a cold/​cool/​freezing/​chilly wind cold/​cool/​freezing/​lukewarm/​tepid water a cold/​cool/​lukewarm/​tepid shower/​bath cold/​lukewarm/​tepid tea/​coffee/​food a cold/​cool drink It’s cold/​chilly/​freezing outside.
  2. 2not friendly The visitors got a chilly reception.
  3. Extra examples She was beginning to feel chilly. We were starting to get a bit chilly. "I’m sorry," said her sister in a chilly voice. Bring a coat. It might turn chilly later. She was made to wait in the chilly corridor. The room was uncomfortably chilly. They met with a chilly reception from my mother.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: chilly