[ ab-surd, -zurd ]
See synonyms for absurd on Thesaurus.com
  1. utterly or obviously senseless, illogical, or untrue; contrary to all reason or common sense; laughably foolish or false: an absurd explanation.

  1. the quality or condition of existing in a meaningless and irrational world.

Origin of absurd

First recorded in 1550–60, absurd is from the Latin word absurdus out of tune, uncouth, ridiculous. See ab-, surd

synonym study For absurd

1. Absurd, ridiculous, preposterous all mean inconsistent with reason or common sense. Absurd means utterly opposed to truth or reason: an absurd claim. Ridiculous implies that something is fit only to be laughed at, perhaps contemptuously: a ridiculous suggestion. Preposterous implies an extreme of foolishness: a preposterous proposal.

Other words for absurd

Opposites for absurd

Other words from absurd

  • ab·surd·ly, adverb
  • ab·surd·ness, noun
  • su·per·ab·surd, adjective
  • su·per·ab·surd·ly, adverb
  • su·per·ab·surd·ness, noun

Words Nearby absurd

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use absurd in a sentence

  • Tressan fell suddenly to groaning and wringing his hands a pathetic figure had it been less absurd.

    St. Martin's Summer | Rafael Sabatini
  • The charges in general are quite reasonable, though I have paid one or two absurd bills.

    Glances at Europe | Horace Greeley
  • I believe I murmured something suitable, but it was absurd to pretend to be overjoyed at the news.

    Uncanny Tales | Various
  • Judge: If I hear any more absurd comparisons, I will give you twelve months.

  • absurd as that taffeta dress was for a child of her age, it seemed to her an armor against all disaster.

British Dictionary definitions for absurd


/ (əbˈsɜːd) /

  1. at variance with reason; manifestly false

  2. ludicrous; ridiculous

  1. the absurd (sometimes capital) philosophy the conception of the world, esp in Existentialist thought, as neither designed nor predictable but irrational and meaningless

Origin of absurd

C16: via French from Latin absurdus dissonant, senseless, from ab- 1 (intensive) + surdus dull-sounding, indistinct

Derived forms of absurd

  • absurdity or absurdness, noun
  • absurdly, adverb

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