OTHER WORDS FROM adulterousa·dul·ter·ous·ly, adverbun·a·dul·ter·ous, adjectiveun·a·dul·ter·ous·ly, adverb
Words nearby adulterous
ABOUT THIS WORD
What does adulterous mean?
Adulterous is used to describe a person who engages in or a relationship that constitutes adultery—a consensual sexual relationship or encounter between someone who’s married and a person they’re not married to (who may or may not be married to someone else).
In other words, adultery can be between two people who are both married to other people, or between a married person and a nonmarried person. Typically, for something to be considered adulterous, at least one of the partners must be married.
On the other hand, similar words like cheating, infidelity, and unfaithfulness can be used regardless of whether either person is married—they simply refer to a (usually sexual) relationship or encounter between people when one or both of them is in a committed relationship with someone else.
When it happens with someone other than one’s spouse, a long-term relationship (often called an affair), a single sexual encounter, or anything in between can be considered adulterous. In some cases, a relationship may even be considered adulterous when it’s nonsexual but intimate (this is sometimes called an emotional affair).
The words adultery and adulterous are especially used in a religious context, in which adultery is often considered a sin. The word adultery is also sometimes used in a legal context, such as during divorce proceedings.
Adultery is associated with a considerable amount of stigma. The word adulterous is always used negatively and implies a critical judgment of such actions.
Someone who participates in adultery can be called an adulterer. The word adulteress specifically refers to a woman who has engaged in adultery. (It has been more common throughout history for women to be called adulterous and to be blamed and punished for adulterous relationships than men.)
Example: Just because it only happened once doesn’t mean it wasn’t adulterous.
Where does adulterous come from?
The first records of the word adulterous come from the 1400s. Its base word, adultery, ultimately derives from the Latin verb adulterāre, meaning “to defile.” The same word is the basis of the English verb adulterate, meaning “to debase” or “to make impure.” Adultery involves adults, but the word adult is based on a different root.
“Thou shalt not commit adultery” is one of the Ten Commandments, and adultery is specifically prohibited by multiple religions and even some laws. In the past, adultery was sometimes used in a more general way to refer to any type of sexual activity considered sinful. Today, however, calling a person or a relationship adulterous typically means that at least one of the partners is married.
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What are some other forms related to adulterous?
- adultery (noun)
What are some synonyms for adulterous?
What are some words that share a root or word element with adulterous?
What are some words that often get used in discussing adulterous?
What are some words adulterous may be commonly confused with?
How is adulterous used in real life?
Adulterous is typically used in a judgmental way.
much enjoyed "Shirley" w/ brilliant performance by Elisabeth Moss. but so strange, Shirley Jackson childless!–& without a hint of the monster-mother who made her life so unhappy. the only villain is the adulterous husband Stanley Edgar Hyman, exasperating but appealing.
— Joyce Carol Oates (@JoyceCarolOates) June 6, 2020
Escaping my adulterous alcoholic husband I drove away in my pajamas. https://t.co/OjE8q4Spi7
— 🌺Leslie…Who Pd Kavanaughs Debts 🧘🏼♀️☸️🥋🦋💋 (@lotusflowerom) June 29, 2020
Subsequently, the next time Beatrice encountered Dante, she refused to greet him, thinking that he was engaged in an adulterous affair with the screen woman. Dante is distraught. His blessedness at being greeted by Beatrice has now been stripped from him. What can he do?
— Sylvain Reynard (@sylvainreynard) July 4, 2020
How to use adulterous in a sentence
More problematic still is a corny story line in which Theo suspects that the lead neurologist might be carrying on some kind of adulterous affair with his dead wife’s brain print.Fresh off a Pulitzer win for ‘The Overstory,’ Richard Powers delivers another environmental ode|Ron Charles|September 21, 2021|Washington Post
There are long books and ongoing debates about whether the personal lives of adulterous politicians should be held against them.How One Louisiana Republican Survived a Sex Scandal (and Another Might Not)|Ben Jacobs|April 11, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Her novel, a fictionalized take on her Left Bank intellectual circle, centers on an adulterous woman torn between two men.
An adulterous affair could be used as blackmail if it fell into the hands of a foreign intelligence service.Alleged Petraeus Mistress Suggested She Was Privy to State Secrets|Eli Lake|November 12, 2012|DAILY BEAST
Many of the abandoned babies born back then were out of wedlock or through adulterous liaisons.
To further explicate the obvious: “Uncommon”—i.e., adulterous—“arrangements vary hugely.”
They have gone to the adulterous rendezvous celebrated in the scandalous verses of Lorenzo the Magnificent.The Medici Boots|Pearl Norton Swet
What else is the laying of such a stress on miracles but the case of 'a wicked and adulterous generation asking a sign'?The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. 1 (2 vols)|Thomas De Quincey
How long to convert that adulterous woman in the temple, who was caught in the very act of adultery?Pleasure & Profit in Bible Study|Dwight Moody
By adulterous love we mean the love of adultery, which destroys conjugial love, as above, n. 423.
The delights of adulterous love are the pleasures of insanity; but the delights of conjugial love are the delights of wisdom.