sleek

sleek, slick, glossy, velvety, silken, silky, satiny are comparable when they mean having a smooth bright surface or appearance. Sleek and slick are sometimes interchangeable with this meaning
{

dark slick leaves— Langley

}
{

the sleek blue plums— Wylie

}
but more often sleek connotes a smoothness or brightness that is the result of close attention or is an indication, especially when the reference is to a person or animal, of being in excellent physical condition
{

let me have men about me that are fat: sleek- headed men and such as sleep o' nights— Shak.

}
{

a beautiful panther ... so bright of eye, so sleek of coat— Thackeray

}
{

the metal felt sleek and warm to his touch— Cloete

}
{

a child's mind thrills at the touch of fur because it is sleekMontague

}
and it may also suggest a smoothness of finish resulting from overattention to or overrefinement in dress and appearance
{

curse me the sleek lords with their plumes and spurs— Lindsay

}
{

Something sleek about him, something that suggested a well-bred dog— Anderson

}
{

the poise, assurance, and sophistication of all these sleek faces— Wolfe

}
Slick, by contrast, is more likely to apply when the intent is to suggest such an extreme of smoothness as to provide an unsafe or slippery surface
{

the grass was slick from the night's dew, and the men slipped frequently— Mailer

}
In extended use slick is less likely than sleek to suggest desirable qualities and often carries more than a hint of contempt
{

as much a slick-surfaced commercial product as a serious piece of literary art— Gurko

}
{

new hotels ... so slick and shiny— Basso

}
{

everything was to be slick, which was Marvin's term of approbation; but not too slick, which was his abomination— Mary Austin

}
Glossy implies a surface that is exceedingly smooth and shining, whether by nature or by art
{

the glossy leaves of the beech tree

}
{

downy peaches and the glossy plum— Dryden

}
{

glossy as black rocks on a sunny day cased in ice— Dorothy Wordsworth

}
Velvety implies the extreme softness associated with the surface or appearance of velvet. The word is often used of things as they appeal to the sense of touch or of sight or of both
{

a velvety skin

}
{

a velvety flower

}
{

a land of velvety meadows and lush gardens— Mumford

}
{

the velvety flanks of the cattle— Glasgow

}
but it is also applicable to sounds that caress the ear or to tastes or odors that are delightfully bland
{

even her high notes are velvety

}
{

the boy reading in his queer, velvety bass voice— Galsworthy

}
Silken implies the smoothness and luster as well as the softness of silk
{

silken hair

}
{

to what green altar . . . lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies, and all her silken flanks with garlands dressed— Keats

}
{

the lazy movement of their bodies beneath their silken doeskins— O'Meara

}
The term is used in reference both to things that appeal to other senses than those of touch or sight and to immaterial things that are softly soothing and pleasant to the spirit or mind
{

a silken voice

}
{

the silken sonority of the strings— Virgil Thomson

}
{

silken words

}
Silky is sometimes used in place of silken
{

fingers, silky and soft— Watts-Dunton

}
{

blue, silky October days— Glover

}
{

his eyes between his silky lashes gone soft— Boyle

}
but when the reference is to persons or their voices, manners, or productions it, more often than silken, suggests an ingratiating or a specious quality
{

put his talent for writing silky satire to most profitable unliterary uses— Derwent May

}
{

Tchaikovsky's Meditation was no silky simper of tone, but something that glowed inside— Cassidy

}
{

there have been many able varmints since, but none quite as silky or loathsome— Perelman

}
Satiny applies to what is not only soft but smooth and shining
{

the satiny petals of a flower

}
{

beautiful women with satiny backs were moving through the crowd— Wolfe

}
Analogous words: *bright, lustrous, brilliant: smooth, even (see LEVEL)

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Sleek — magazine Beschreibung magazine for art and fashion Fachgebiet zeitgenössische Kunst, Fotografie, Mode Sprache Deutsch/Engl …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • sleek´ly — sleek «sleek», adjective, verb. –adj. 1. soft and glossy; smooth: »sleek hair. 2. having smooth, soft skin, hair, or fur: »a sleek cat. 3. Figurative. smooth of speech and manners: »a sleek salesman. He had a look of sleek intelligence ( …   Useful english dictionary

  • sleek — sleek·en; sleek·er; sleek·it; sleek·ly; sleek·ness; sleek; …   English syllables

  • Sleek — (sl[=e]k), a. [Compar. {Sleeker} (sl[=e]k [ e]r); superl. {Sleekest}.] [OE. slik; akin to Icel. sl[=i]kr, and OE. sliken to glide, slide, G. schleichen, OHG. sl[=i]hhan, D. slik, slijk, mud, slime, and E. slink. Cf. {Slick}, {Slink}.] 1. Having… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sleek|y — «SLEE kee», adjective, sleek|i|er, sleek|i|est. 1. sleek; smooth. 2. Figurative …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sleek — Sleek, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Sleeked};p. pr. & vb. n. {Sleeking}.] To make even and smooth; to render smooth, soft, and glossy; to smooth over. [1913 Webster] Sleeking her soft alluring locks. Milton. [1913 Webster] Gentle, my lord, sleek o er… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sleek — [slēk] adj. [var. of SLICK, with Early ModE vowel lengthening] 1. smooth and shiny; glossy, as a highly polished surface, well kept hair or fur, etc. 2. of well fed or well groomed appearance [fat, sleek pigeons] 3. polished in speech and… …   English World dictionary

  • sleek|it — «SLEE kiht», adjective. Scottish. 1. sleek: »Wee, sleekit, cow rin , timrous beastie… (Robert Burns). 2. plausible; deceitful; sly. ╂[variant of sleeked, past participle of sleek] …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sleek — Sleek, adv. With ease and dexterity. [Low] [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sleek — Sleek, n. 1. That which makes smooth; varnish. [R.] [1913 Webster] 2. A slick. [Webster 1913 Suppl.] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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