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[in-krej-uh-luh s] /ɪnˈkrɛdʒ ə ləs/
not credulous; disinclined or indisposed to believe; skeptical.
indicating or showing unbelief:
an incredulous smile.
Origin of incredulous
From the Latin word incrēdulus, dating back to 1525-35. See in-3, credulous
Related forms
incredulously, adverb
incredulousness, noun
Can be confused
incredible, incredulous.
Synonym Study
See doubtful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for incredulous
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The exclamation came from the girl in a note of incredulous astonishment.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • Wilson's voice showed that he was more than incredulous; he was profoundly moved.

    K Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • In the beginning it was incredulous about some of the details.

    K Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • Chip nodded, half suffocated with crowding, incredulous hopes.

    Chip, of the Flying U B. M. Bower
  • She saw the lift of her head, the incredulous, resentful look in her eyes.

    Her Father's Daughter Gene Stratton-Porter
British Dictionary definitions for incredulous


(often foll by of) not prepared or willing to believe (something); unbelieving
Derived Forms
incredulously, adverb
incredulousness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for incredulous

"unbelieving," 1570s, from Latin incredulus "unbelieving, incredulous," from in- "not" (see in- (1)) + credulus (see credulous). Formerly also of religious beliefs. Related: Incredulously; incredulousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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