• WordNet 3.6
    • adj unctuous unpleasantly and excessively suave or ingratiating in manner or speech "buttery praise","gave him a fulsome introduction","an oily sycophantic press agent","oleaginous hypocrisy","smarmy self-importance","the unctuous Uriah Heep","soapy compliments"
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Unctuous Bland; suave; also, tender; fervid; as, an unctuous speech; sometimes, insincerely suave or fervid.
    • Unctuous Having a smooth, greasy feel, as certain minerals.
    • Unctuous Of the nature or quality of an unguent or ointment; fatty; oily; greasy. "The unctuous cheese."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • unctuous Of the nature of or resembling an unguent or ointment; greasy; oily; fat; soapy.
    • unctuous oily, or soapy feel when rubbed or touched by the fingers—a characteristic of steatite, talc, serpentine, and other magnesian minerals, due to the magnesia which they contain.
    • unctuous Having or characterized by unction; tending to religious fervor; especially, falsely or affectedly fervid, devotional, emotional, gushing, or the like; excessively bland or suave.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Unctuous oily: greasy
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. onctueux, LL. unctuosus, fr. L. unctus, anointment, fr. ungere, unctum, to anoint. See Unguent
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. unctiounguĕre, unctum, to anoint.


In literature:

The air was vibrant in the unctuous swell of sound.
"Old Ebenezer" by Opie Read
The soil in his district was mostly a strong unctuous clay, free from stones.
"Farm drainage" by Henry Flagg French
His freedom from scruples, combined with a natural gift for unctuous and persuasive rhetoric, commanded admiration.
"Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 146, April 22, 1914" by Various
Long Jim had never before been so eloquent, and never before had his voice been so unctuous.
"The Keepers of the Trail" by Joseph A. Altsheler
It was a real relief, a positive relaxation from strain, therefore, when Tatsu threw open the door and unctuously announced Mademoiselle Mariposa.
"The Silver Butterfly" by Mrs. Wilson Woodrow
She spoke of the depravity of the natives in a voice which nothing could hush, but with a vehemently unctuous horror.
"The Trembling of a Leaf" by William Somerset Maugham
He gesticulated freely and spoke in an unctuous, fawning tone.
"Fantômas" by Pierre Souvestre
But," he concluded unctuously, "I pointed out to her that from sin springs nothing but unhappiness.
"IT and Other Stories" by Gouverneur Morris
Hall grew unctuous, and had many a sly wink with Chaplain McDevitt.
"A Man of Two Countries" by Alice Harriman
Bacon was frying unctuously in a pan on the coals beside them; their suit-cases lay near.
"The Gay Rebellion" by Robert W. Chambers
I am disgusted with so much unctuousness.
"Secret Memoirs: The Story of Louise, Crown Princess" by Henry W. Fischer
The Alcalde continued his unctuous flattery, and the priest, in turn, cultivated him assiduously.
"Carmen Ariza" by Charles Francis Stocking
They are not painted in rich and unctuous touches.
"The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition" by Robert Louis Stevenson
Hammer was kind, with an unctuous, patronizing gentleness.
"The Bondboy" by George W. (George Washington) Ogden
Fra Diavolo unctuously rubbed his thumb over his fingers.
"The Missourian" by Eugene P. (Eugene Percy) Lyle
And this was the bland and unctuous voice of Dr. Lett.
"The Hate Disease" by William Fitzgerald Jenkins
His face was one wreath of unctuous smiles.
"Mistress Nell" by George C. Hazelton, Jr.
They looked up at her with broad, complacent, unctuous faces, smiling, yet resolute.
"Cudjo's Cave" by J. T. Trowbridge
He looked, and the salute came again, unctuous and obsequious.
"John March, Southerner" by George W. Cable
Despite its tame ending, this unctuous discussion on social ethics led to wholly unforeseen results.
"Cynthia's Chauffeur" by Louis Tracy

In poetry:

Your people—take them as a whole—
Are careless on the score of grace;
And hence you needn’t comb your poll
Or decorate your unctuous face.
"Black Lizzie" by Henry Kendall

In news:

Gentile's 'Unctuous' Chocolate-covered Candy Cane Martini.
Gentile 's 'Unctuous' Chocolate-covered Candy Cane Martini.
Caramelized onions are incredibly unctuous, with a rich mouth feel that belies the small amount of oil used.
This bit of lefty alarmism is just too sanctimoniously, gloriously, unctuously stupid to pass up.
But his manner is smooth, almost unctuous, not occasionally scary like Speaker Newt Gingrich's rhetoric.
What About Equally Unctuous Conservative Victimology.
Philippe Braun , who created this soft, slightly spicy tomato jelly topped with an unctuous avocado cream, is the extremely talented executive chef at L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon in Paris.
Philippe Braun, who created this soft, slightly spicy tomato jelly topped with an unctuous avocado cream, is the extremely talented executive chef at L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon in Paris.
She practically coos when clutching a good glass of wine and unabashedly uses words like chewy, unctuous, and velvety to share what's on her tongue.
I don't know whether, in the end, this dish truly reclaims the pasta-salad family honor, or merely declares a truce with its unctuous cousin.
German Rieslings balance impressive acidity with apple and citrus fruit flavors, and range from dry and refreshing to sweet and unctuous.