Meaning of nigh in English:


Pronunciation /nʌɪ/

Translate nigh into Spanish


archaic, literary
  • 1Almost.

    ‘a car weighing nigh on two tons’
    • ‘recovery will be well nigh impossible’
    • ‘I think it is nigh on impossible to remove religious teaching from the classroom (at least for the foreseeable future).’
    • ‘The only thing close to getting the media coverage that race relations has been getting for nigh on two months was what to do about superannuation.’
    • ‘The third, John, hasn't seen the other two for nigh on 20 years, having started a family and taken on the responsibilities that go with it.’
    • ‘In the spring and early summer inflation rose sharply, to nigh on 3.5%, while output growth was robust.’
    • ‘I had known him for nigh on forty years, known him too for the great character that he was, the true gentleman, the sportsman supreme.’
    • ‘For nigh on three decades Jim Ryan has been an integral part of the teaching staff at our local Christian Brothers secondary school.’
    • ‘For nigh on 47 years, Kitty has been part of the post office structure.’
    • ‘With all deference to the bigger issues, it is nigh on impossible to quantify the potential economic effects of these events.’
    • ‘Yes, the logistics of accommodating and transporting the world's best athletes for nigh on a month will mean disruption on a massive scale.’
    • ‘This reviewer sadly is not, so conveying more than two-and-a-half hours of pure joy into 250 words is nigh on impossible.’
    • ‘Instead, with the match already nigh on a 7,000 sell-out, everywhere they look the stars will be on the other side of the field.’
    • ‘They range from the poor state of the roads to sheer recklessness on the part of some drivers who have nigh on abandoned all road safety rules.’
    • ‘Because for nigh on a decade he has been that rare thing: a British opera star in constant demand abroad, particularly in the States.’
    • ‘The single-player missions are frantic and the multiplayer clashes online both frenetic and nigh on impossible to survive.’
    • ‘How do people fit everything in I wonder… and work nigh on full time?’
    • ‘Heaven knows why this has been a search item for nigh on 18 months now.’
    • ‘We spent a half an hour in the dealership, which is nigh unto an eternity when you have a small child.’
    • ‘Trust me, this will be something that will be nigh unto impossible to break.’
    • ‘After the initial shock and awe passes, commanding his respect will be nigh unto impossible.’
    well-nigh, almost, nearly, just about, more or less, practically, virtually, all but, as good as, next to, close to, near, to all intents and purposes, approaching, bordering on, verging on, nearing, about
  • 2At or to a short distance away.

    ‘they drew nigh unto the city’
    • ‘Thus, my look and in depth coverage of Roman cuisine draws nigh to a close.’
    • ‘I suppose time will tell what happens as the date draws nigh.’
    • ‘But with Election Day drawing nigh once more, guess who is promising what once again?’
    • ‘Right now, elections are drawing nigh, the date is to be announced on Sunday.’
    • ‘The provincial finals, which are drawing nigh, will also throw more light on the road ahead.’
    • ‘Time for all passed pleasantly until the time of departure drew nigh.’
    • ‘We were friends, good friends, but the time was drawing nigh when I had to lay my cards on the table.’
    • ‘Days and weeks roll by and Winter nights draw nigh and everything that lives must die’
    • ‘As the end of the Antarctic summer drew nigh, the pair found themselves with about 400 miles of ice yet to cover.’
    • ‘As the time for outrageously big prizes draws nigh, I want to give a very special thanks to the people who made it all possible.’
    • ‘Forbidden were men to draw nigh the plant, yet weaker were their still young and innocent minds to words of deception.’
    • ‘As with any games referee decisions were called into question in the quarter finals, building the tension as the end drew nigh.’
    • ‘I leave this record as penance for my own conscious, as my death draws nigh.’
    • ‘It is to my shame, then, to tell you that one fair morning, a ship drew nigh in the banner of the horizon.’
    • ‘The caliber of conversation in the pod has also taken a nosedive as the blessed date draws nigh.’


archaic, literary
  • At or to a short distance away from (a place)

    • ‘she wanders …but seems to remain nigh the sea’


archaic, literary
  • Located a short distance away.

    • ‘the end is nigh’
    near, adjacent, in close proximity, close at hand, near at hand


Old English nēh, nēah, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch na, German nah. Compare with near.