First attested around 1472. From Middle English absurdite, then from either Middle French absurdité, or from Late Latin absurditas (“dissonance, incongruity”), from Latin absurdus + -itas (“quality, state, degree”). Equivalent to absurd + -ity.
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /əbˈsɜːd.ɪ.ti/
Audio (UK) (file)
- (US) IPA(key): /æbˈsɝd.ɪ.ti/, /æbˈzɝd.ɪ.ti/, /əbˈsɝd.ɪ.ti/, /əbˈzɝd.ɪ.ti/
- (countable) That which is absurd; an absurd action; a logical contradiction. [First attested in the late 15th century.]
- 1848 November – 1850 December, William Makepeace Thackeray, chapter 7, in The History of Pendennis. […], volume (please specify |volume=I or II), London: Bradbury and Evans, […], OCLC 2057953:
- And it is a fact that in these two days the boy had almost talked over his mother, too; had parried all her objections one after another with that indignant good sense which is often the perfection of absurdity …
- (uncountable) The quality of being absurd or inconsistent with obvious truth, reason, or sound judgment. [First attested in the early 16th century.]
- 1992, Rudolf M[athias] Schuster, The Hepaticae and Anthocerotae of North America: East of the Hundredth Meridian, volume V, New York, N.Y.: Columbia University Press, →ISBN, page viii:
- Neither [Jones] […] nor I (in 1966) could conceive of reducing our "science" to the ultimate absurdity of reading Finnish newspapers almost a century and a half old in order to establish "priority."
- (obsolete, rare) Dissonance. [Attested from around 1350 to 1470 until the late 17th century.]
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
- ^ Laurence Urdang (editor), The Random House College Dictionary (Random House, 1984 , →ISBN), page 7
- ^ Philip Babcock Gove (editor), Webster's Third International Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged (G. & C. Merriam Co., 1976 , →ISBN), page 8
- Lesley Brown, editor-in-chief; William R. Trumble and Angus Stevenson, editors (2002), “absurdity”, in The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on Historical Principles, 5th edition, Oxford; New York, N.Y.: Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 10.