- not quick or alert in perception, feeling, or intellect; not sensitive or observant; dull.
- not sharp, acute, or pointed; blunt in form.
- (of a leaf, petal, etc.) rounded at the extremity.
- indistinctly felt or perceived, as pain or sound.
Origin of obtuse
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for obtuseness
The multi-step process with baseball writers and then the Veterans Committee is model of obtuseness.The Baseball Hall of Fame is a Mess
January 9, 2014
My besetting fear was that I couldn't count on her obtuseness.The Greater Inclination
We had not, however, taken into account the obtuseness of a barbaric despot.Freeland
As soon as he had taken up a business, his obtuseness vanished.Howards End
E. M. Forster
Oswald marveled at the obtuseness of this eminent barrister.Oswald Langdon
Carson Jay Lee
Besides, that one particular area of obtuseness was a real part of his charm.Masters of Space
Edward Elmer Smith
- mentally slow or emotionally insensitive
- (of an angle) lying between 90° and 180°
- (of a triangle) having one interior angle greater than 90°
- not sharp or pointed
- indistinctly felt, heard, etc; dullobtuse pain
- (of a leaf or similar flat part) having a rounded or blunt tip
Word Origin and History for obtuseness
early 15c., "dull, blunted," from Middle French obtus (fem. obtuse), from Latin obtusus "blunted, dull," also used figuratively, past participle of obtundere "to beat against, make dull," from ob "against" (see ob-) + tundere "to beat," from PIE *(s)tud-e- "to beat, strike, push, thrust," from root *(s)teu- "to push, stick, knock, beat" (cf. Latin tudes "hammer," Sanskrit tudati "he thrusts"). Sense of "stupid" is first found c.1500. Related: Obtusely; obtuseness.
- Lacking quickness of perception or intellect.
- Not sharp or acute; blunt.