Definition of petulance in English:



  • [mass noun] The quality of being childishly sulky or bad-tempered.

    ‘a slight degree of petulance had crept into his voice’
    • ‘Anger would have been misplaced, petulance completely out of character.’
    • ‘Calderwood was so angered by the petulance he refused to acknowledge his midfielder.’
    • ‘The old petulance, the bearlike hunching ill-temper of his bachelor days has vanished.’
    • ‘Exhibiting a petulance last season, it has been alleged that he would throw tantrums if substituted in youth matches.’
    • ‘I have never seen him descend to such a depth of petulance and spitefulness that he reached last night.’
    peevishness, bad temper, ill temper, pettishness, pique, impatience, irritability, moodiness, sulkiness, snappishness, touchiness, waspishness, irascibility, tetchiness, testiness, querulousness, fractiousness, cantankerousness, grumpiness, grouchiness, crabbiness, ill humour, spleen
    sullenness, surliness, sourness, churlishness, ungraciousness
    crankiness, a sore head
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