- sharp or severe in effect; intense: acute sorrow; an acute pain.
- extremely great or serious; crucial; critical: an acute shortage of oil.
- (of disease) brief and severe (opposed to chronic).
- sharp or penetrating in intellect, insight, or perception: an acute observer.
- extremely sensitive even to slight details or impressions: acute eyesight.
- sharp at the end; ending in a point.
- (of an angle) less than 90°.
- (of a triangle) containing only acute angles.
- consisting of, indicated by, or bearing the mark ´, placed over vowel symbols in some languages to show that the vowels or the syllables they are in are pronounced in a certain way, as in French that the quality of an e so marked is close; in Hungarian that the vowel is long; in Spanish that the marked syllable bears the word accent; in Ibo that it is pronounced with high tones; or in classical Greek, where the mark originated, that the syllable bears the word accent and is pronounced, according to the ancient grammarians, with raised pitch (opposed to grave): the acute accent; an acute e.
- the acute accent.
Origin of acute
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for acuteness
I leave time and method of explanation to your own judgment and acuteness.Alice, or The Mysteries, Complete
The acuteness of the pain in his head set his mind almost wandering.The Night Riders
You are very unjust to both of us if you imply that I have not a high opinion of your acuteness.Tony Butler
Charles James Lever
Men like the problem that they fancy they have unravelled by their own acuteness.The Bramleighs Of Bishop's Folly
Charles James Lever
Now that I look back I am more than ever impressed by Stroeve's acuteness.The Moon and Sixpence
W. Somerset Maugham
- penetrating in perception or insight
- sensitive to details; keen
- of extreme importance; crucial
- sharp or severe; intenseacute pain; an acute drought
- having a sharp end or point
- (of an angle) less than 90°
- (of a triangle) having all its interior angles less than 90°
- (of a disease)
- arising suddenly and manifesting intense severity
- of relatively short durationCompare chronic (def. 2)
- (of a vowel or syllable in some languages with a pitch accent, such as ancient Greek) spoken or sung on a higher musical pitch relative to neighbouring syllables or vowels
- of or relating to an accent (´) placed over vowels, denoting that the vowel is pronounced with higher musical pitch (as in ancient Greek), with a certain special quality (as in French), etcCompare (for senses 8a, 8b): grave, circumflex
- (of a hospital, hospital bed, or ward) intended to accommodate short-term patients with acute illnesses
- an acute accent
Word Origin and History for acuteness
late 14c., originally of fevers and diseases, "coming and going quickly" (opposed to a chronic), from Latin acutus "sharp, pointed," figuratively "shrill, penetrating; intelligent, cunning," past participle of acuere "sharpen" (see acuity). Meaning "sharp, irritating" is from early 15c. Meaning "intense" is from 1727. Related: Acutely; acuteness.
- Pointed at the end; sharp.
- Of or relating to a disease or a condition with a rapid onset and a short, severe course.
- Of or relating to a patient afflicted with such a disease.
- Reacting readily to stimuli or impressions, as hearing or eyesight; sensitive.
- Relating to an illness that has a rapid onset and follows a short but severe course. Compare chronic.
- Having an acute angle.