Definition of torpor in US English:



  • A state of physical or mental inactivity; lethargy.

    ‘they veered between apathetic torpor and hysterical fanaticism’
    • ‘Where physical torpor leads, mental atrophy is sure to follow.’
    • ‘It remains to be seen whether the American populace will wake from their torpor, put down the remote, and do something.’
    • ‘The lizard refused everything and was slipping into torpor.’
    • ‘The chorus has that air of resigned lethargy and torpor which regularly lowers over those with little or no hope.’
    • ‘These are the defilements of sensuous desire, ill-will or anger, sloth and torpor, agitation and worry, and doubt.’
    • ‘However, he markedly improves in his soft-spoken soliloquies, as he brings a genuine depth of feeling in conveying his domestic torpor.’
    • ‘Montgomery's is a confident production that doesn't need to sensationalise to express the moral torpor and emotional immaturity of the characters.’
    • ‘This may be a sign of American democracy's torpor; or of our preoccupied sleepwalk with cults of brand-name products.’
    • ‘Maybe the re-appearance of her beloved Quickos will finally drag her out of this sorry state of maudlin, mumbling, booze-addled torpor.’
    • ‘During the spell of inertia that weaves around the village and the scorching heat which regularly topped 100 degrees we fell into a state of not unpleasant torpor.’
    • ‘The Young Patriot Essay Contest will be discontinued due to the indolence and torpor of the modern youth.’
    • ‘He had fallen at the hands of sloth and torpor; of avarice and complacency.’
    • ‘Behind the picture-book porticos, manicured lawns and mile-wide smiles lie anxiety, self-loathing and torpor.’
    • ‘Hasn't the Church always regained her strength in times of moral torpor by recalling the heights from which it has fallen?’
    • ‘The consequences you described to a friend: extreme torpor, fatigue, dizzy spells in public places, frayed nerves.’
    • ‘Practitioners of ‘silent illumination’ came in for criticism on the account that their practice led to mere laziness and torpor.’
    • ‘But this is a guy who was lifted out of his generic teenage torpor only by endlessly listening to records, and who really believes music is the only reason for existing.’
    • ‘That should keep people busy denouncing my moral torpor today!’
    • ‘The conventional view now is of an uneducated, largely illiterate proletariat sitting in moronic torpor until the beginnings of state education.’
    • ‘This may also be due to the apathy, bordering on torpor, concerning most elements of conventional politics and theories of power.’
    lethargy, torpidity, sluggishness, inertia, inertness, inactivity, inaction, slowness, lifelessness, dullness, heaviness, listlessness, languor, languidness, stagnation, laziness, idleness, indolence, shiftlessness, sloth, slothfulness, apathy, accidie, passivity, weariness, tiredness, lassitude, fatigue, sleepiness, drowsiness, enervation, somnolence, narcosis
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Late Middle English: from Latin, from torpere ‘be numb or sluggish’.