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[truhk-yuh-luh nt, troo-kyuh-] /ˈtrʌk yə lənt, ˈtru kyə-/
fierce; cruel; savagely brutal.
brutally harsh; vitriolic; scathing:
his truculent criticism of her work.
aggressively hostile; belligerent.
Origin of truculent
1530-40; < Latin truculentus, equivalent to truc-, stem of trux savage, pitiless + -ulentus -ulent
Related forms
truculence, truculency, noun
truculently, adverb
1. See fierce.
1. amiable, gentle. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for truculent
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It was with an ugly and truculent manner, if more warily, that the man closed in.

    The Black Bag Louis Joseph Vance
  • But outnumbering them by far were faces set in truculent mold.

    The Martian Cabal Roman Frederick Starzl
  • George, who was big and lank, and truculent in appearance, nodded.

    The Greater Power Harold Bindloss
  • I could have embraced that figure of grotesque and truculent devotion.

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
  • The Illanun chiefs, for all their truculent aspect, were much too prudent to attempt to move.

    The Rescue Joseph Conrad
  • He was a truculent, untamable rough, evidently inspired with gin.

    The Gypsies Charles G. Leland
  • Or was I, after all my grind, to yield a place to the truculent Coxhead?

    Tom, Dick and Harry Talbot Baines Reed
  • De Marle was helpless with illness, but truculent in temper.

British Dictionary definitions for truculent


defiantly aggressive, sullen, or obstreperous
(archaic) savage, fierce, or harsh
Derived Forms
truculence, truculency, noun
truculently, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Latin truculentus, from trux fierce
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 truculent

1540s, from Latin truculentus "fierce, savage," from trux (genitive trucis) "fierce, wild."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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