The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Pretty \Pret"ty\, a. [Compar. Prettier; superl. Prettiest.]
[OE. prati, AS. pr[ae]ttig, pr[ae]tig, crafty, sly, akin to
pr[ae]t, pr[ae]tt, deceit, trickery, Icel. prettugr tricky,
prettr a trick; probably fr. Latin, perhaps through Celtic;
cf. W. praith act, deed, practice, LL. practica execution,
practice, plot. See Practice.]
1. Pleasing by delicacy or grace; attracting, but not
striking or impressing; of a pleasing and attractive form
a color; having slight or diminutive beauty; neat or
elegant without elevation or grandeur; pleasingly, but not
grandly, conceived or expressed; as, a pretty face; a
pretty flower; a pretty poem.
This is the prettiest lowborn lass that ever
Ran on the greensward. --Shak.
2. Moderately large; considerable; as, he had saved a pretty
fortune. "Wavering a pretty while." --Evelyn.
3. Affectedly nice; foppish; -- used in an ill sense.
The pretty gentleman is the most complaisant in the
4. Mean; despicable; contemptible; -- used ironically; as, a
pretty trick; a pretty fellow.
5. Stout; strong and brave; intrepid; valiant. [Scot.]
[He] observed they were pretty men, meaning not
handsome. --Sir W.
Syn: Elegant; neat; fine. See Handsome.