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Alternative forms[edit]


From Old French fleumatique, from Latin phlegmaticus, from Ancient Greek φλεγματικός (phlegmatikós), from φλέγμα (phlégma).


  • IPA(key): /flɛɡˈmætɪk/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ætɪk


phlegmatic (comparative more phlegmatic, superlative most phlegmatic)

  1. Not easily excited to action or passion; calm; sluggish.
    • 1873, Jules Verne, chapter 2, in Around the World in 80 Days[1]:
      Calm and phlegmatic, with a clear eye, Mr. Fogg seemed a perfect type of that English composure which Angelica Kauffmann has so skilfully represented on canvas.
    • 2013, A.O. Scott, “How It Looks to Think: Watch Her,” Rev. of Hannah Arendt, dir. by Margarethe von Trotta, New York Times 29 May 2013: C1. Print.
      Their friendship (immortalized in a splendid volume of letters that has clearly served as one of Ms. von Trotta's sources) is a fascinating study in cultural and temperamental contrast, an impulsive and witty American paired with a steady, phlegmatic German.
  2. (archaic) Abounding in phlegm.
    phlegmatic humors
    a phlegmatic constitution
  3. Generating, causing, or full of phlegm.


Coordinate terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


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phlegmatic (plural phlegmatics)

  1. One who has a phlegmatic disposition.