Definition of absurd in English:



  • 1Wildly unreasonable, illogical, or inappropriate.

    ‘the allegations are patently absurd’
    • ‘It is absurd to blame current difficulties on any state's governor, Republican or Democrat.’
    • ‘In my view, his evidence is patently absurd, unreasonable, and not remotely believable.’
    • ‘To make excuses for such blatant stupidity is even more absurd.’
    • ‘It would be absurd to blame Vodafone for terrorists chatting across their network.’
    • ‘But the principle is absurd and irrational as far as the international community is concerned.’
    • ‘When that happens heads are going to roll even if it happens in such a way so that placing blame is absurd.’
    • ‘What made him think of such an outrageously absurd idea I can't say for sure.’
    • ‘This was the sort of absurd nonsense that I had painstakingly ignored all the years of my life, and it had finally come back to haunt me.’
    • ‘By the end of the programme, it was athletes and fans who hung themselves in public with their own illogical justifications and absurd piety.’
    • ‘The level of outrage is absurd: it's front page news and questions have been asked in Parliament.’
    • ‘Its also absurd to try to blame this on gun-ownership.’
    • ‘These notions, as absurd and preposterous as they might seem to us, were taken as gospel truth by millions of pious Christians.’
    • ‘It would be absurd to blame Aristotle for his conceptual poverty: poverty is a lack, not a failing.’
    • ‘It is absurd to blame schools with high standards for other schools having low standards.’
    • ‘It was absurd, insane, and downright dangerous, but it was an idea.’
    • ‘It's like one of the rules of cross-examination - leave irrational and absurd answers where they lie.’
    • ‘Prime Minister John Howard says the comments are absurd and monstrous.’
    • ‘‘It's an absurd nonsense that Parliament should not sit for two and a half months,’ he says.’
    • ‘However, it is absurd to place primary blame on the players for this situation.’
    • ‘That is the sort of absurd nonsense that has been driving the other side of the debate.’
    preposterous, ridiculous, ludicrous, farcical, laughable, risible
    idiotic, stupid, foolish, silly, inane, imbecilic, insane, hare-brained
    unreasonable, irrational, illogical, nonsensical, pointless, senseless
    outrageous, shocking, astonishing, monstrous, fantastic, incongruous, grotesque
    unbelievable, incredible, unthinkable, implausible
    barmy, daft
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    1. 1.1Arousing amusement or derision; ridiculous.
      ‘short skirts and knee socks looked absurd on such a tall girl’
      • ‘He plays the part of the semi-moronic, innocently brutal Quentin with as much conviction as one can muster for such an absurd character.’
      • ‘It was that kind of day: a ridiculous number of substitutions, 19, and an entertaining but equally absurd amount of goals.’
      • ‘The humorously absurd mood is set up from the start.’
      • ‘The likes of me have given up having opinions about the monarchy: cruel to knock them, when everyone knows they're absurd.’
      • ‘It's an absurd ritual, and funny, yet his little trek affords a lovely view and brings him into contact with fellow passers-by.’
      • ‘And on that note, the whole thing about chocolate being good for you is equally absurd.’
      • ‘In my endless pursuit of funny stories about Eskimo words for snow, I've found friends who will send me absurd comics about it, too.’
      • ‘‘Log’ is a pointless, absurd song, which makes me cry almost every time I hear it.’
      • ‘The result is a mixed platter: Hilariously absurd one minute, farcically annoying the next, and damn surreal all of the time.’
      • ‘The last resort for sticking to production deadlines has obviously been trading humour for outrage, for the movie is as outrageous as it is absurd.’
      • ‘All of Cohen's characters are absurd, and they push people towards extremes on a regular basis.’
      • ‘A bizarre, incredibly absurd play which I think failed to hit the mark.’
      • ‘He created an absurd and funny universe that, though ridiculous, always seemed real and sincere.’
      • ‘His grotesque and absurd characters committed gross, outrageous acts.’
      • ‘The customers' terrified looks therefore appear in a somewhat absurd and comical light.’
      • ‘Not surprisingly, there are laughs to be had; wrestlers are, of course, innately absurd figures.’
      • ‘The town described by Kipling in Plain Tales from the Hills seemed a wonderfully absurd Victorian fantasy.’
      • ‘The sets were shoddy, the costumes gaudy and sometimes absurd, and the music inappropriate.’
      • ‘It has become overpriced, overrated and overrun with ridiculous people who live absurd lives.’
      • ‘The man is completely fearless, has a wildly absurd sense of humor, and is apparently a complete innocent.’
      • ‘The reason I was attracted to it in the first place is because people are absurd.’
      • ‘I'm all out of amusing anecdotes and absurd ruminations.’
      laughable, ridiculous, comical, comic, amusing, funny, chucklesome, hilarious, humorous, droll, entertaining, diverting, farcical, slapstick, silly, facetious, ludicrous, hysterical, uproarious, riotous, side-splitting, zany, grotesque
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  • An absurd state of affairs.

    ‘the incidents that followed bordered on the absurd’
    • ‘The voice carries an Eastern European's lack of surprise before the trauma of history and an inclination towards the abstract and the absurd.’
    • ‘This statement is so untrue that it borders on the absurd.’
    • ‘While such criticism is certainly fair and reasonable, the calls for Little's scalp as manager border on the absurd.’
    • ‘Martin's presumptuous and unproven speculation borders on the absurd.’
    • ‘Who could this ruthless new satirist be, who had parachuted unannounced into the Scottish media, with so sharp a knife and so keen a sense of the absurd?’
    • ‘So they are forced to construct an ideology of the absurd.’
    • ‘The advice given to those affected by the potato blight bordered on the absurd.’
    • ‘When I think of the present it appears to be a drama of the absurd.’
    • ‘The idea that raw-milk cheese poses a public-health menace in the same category as cigarettes borders on the absurd.’
    • ‘It borders on the absurd for the mourner to dance gleefully while his parent lies dead in a fresh grave.’
    • ‘Will anyone else be watching this spectacle of the absurd?’
    • ‘For understandable reasons we prefer to think of ourselves as rational agents who live meaningful lives rather than as muddled actors in a theatre of the absurd.’
    • ‘Where it is not downright unpleasant, the situation lapses into the absurd.’
    • ‘Security measures for local flights border on the absurd.’
    • ‘Others found solace in deep religious faith, or redefined life in terms of the absurd.’
    • ‘Administrative and political life is corrupt, and the bureaucracy often borders on the absurd.’
    • ‘His refusal to give de Valera credit for his international diplomacy in the 1930s borders on the absurd.’
    • ‘It is equally suitable for adults and children, and all it requires is an audience that is prepared to embrace the absurd.’
    • ‘With its mix of voyeurism, suffering and pointlessness, this is a lovely, mute excursion into the theatre of the absurd.’
    • ‘Yes, well, you often see the absurd in situations that seem quite normal to others.’


Mid 16th century: from Latin absurdus out of tune, hence irrational; related to surdus deaf, dull.