cynical

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See also: Cynical

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Originated 1580–90 from cynic+-al.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (file)

Adjective[edit]

cynical (comparative more cynical, superlative most cynical)

  1. of or relating to the belief that human actions are motivated only or primarily by base desires or selfishness.
    • Johnson
      I hope it is no very cynical asperity not to confess obligations where no benefit has been received.
  2. skeptical of the integrity, sincerity, or motives of others.
  3. bitterly or jadedly distrustful or contemptuous; mocking.
    • 1945, George Orwell, Animal Farm, chapter 1
      He seldom talked, and when he did, it was usually to make some cynical remark-for instance, he would say that God had given him a tail to keep the flies off, but that he would sooner have had no tail and no flies.
  4. showing contempt for accepted moral standards by one's actions.
  5. (medicine, rare) like the actions of a snarling dog.
    a cynic spasm

Translations[edit]

References[edit]

  • cynical” in The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition, Houghton Mifflin Company, 2000.
  • cynical” in Dictionary.com Unabridged, v1.0.1, Lexico Publishing Group, 2006.
  • "cynical" in WordNet 2.0, Princeton University, 2003.