1informal, offensive A stupid person (used as a general term of abuse)idiot, ass, halfwit, nincompoop, blockhead, buffoon, dunce, dolt, ignoramus, imbecile, dullard, moron, simpleton, clodView synonyms
dated A person who is deformed and mentally handicapped because of congenital thyroid deficiency.
- ‘This congenital hypothyroidism, unlike the neurological cretin, is amenable to treatment with thyroid hormones.’
Late 18th century: from French crétin, from Swiss French crestin ‘Christian’ (from Latin Christianus), here used to mean ‘human being’, apparently as a reminder that, though deformed, cretins were human and not beasts.
We take a look at several popular, though confusing, punctuation marks.