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Origin of austere
synonym study for austere
OTHER WORDS FROM austereaus·tere·ly, adverbaus·tere·ness, nounun·aus·tere, adjectiveun·aus·tere·ly, adverb
Words nearby austere
What does austere mean?
Austere most commonly means extremely stern or strict or without any frills or luxuries.
Things that are described as austere are serious, harsh, or severely simple.
The word is especially used to describe a state of extreme self-discipline or minimalistic living, such as the austere conditions in a monastery. Think of a monk who lives in a bedroom with only a metal cot and eats plain rice every day—that’s an austere lifestyle.
The noun form of austere is austerity—the state of being austere.
Example: You can’t expect people to cope with such austere conditions—they need more than the bare necessities.
Where does austere come from?
The first records of the word austere come from around the late 1300s. It comes from the Greek austērós, meaning “harsh, rough, bitter.”
Austere is often applied to harsh, rough, and severely simple conditions. Sometimes, people seek out austere conditions on purpose. Such conditions in a monastery are typically intended to help those who live there focus on the spiritual aspect of life without being distracted by anything that’s considered frivolous.
In many cases, though, austerity is not by choice. People forced to live in austere conditions must get along without any luxuries and often without some things that other people considered necessities. Austerity measures implemented by governments often involve cutting everything from the budget that’s not absolutely essential, leaving citizens to live in extremely austere conditions.
A person who’s described as austere is extremely serious and perhaps stern—think of the expressions on the farmers depicted in the painting American Gothic. A style of art, such as architecture, might be described as austere if it’s extremely simple, with no ornamentation.
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What are some other forms related to austere?
- austerity (noun)
- austerely (adverb)
- austereness (noun)
- unaustere (adjective)
- unausterely (adverb)
What are some synonyms for austere?
What are some words that often get used in discussing austere?
How is austere used in real life?
The word austere can be used in all kinds of contexts. It’s often used to describe a minimalistic lifestyle or a stern person’s personality.
I live an extremely austere life lol. In that I actually do practice what I preach. Less clutter, more time, etc.
It's difficult on a number of levels but doable & spiritually/psychologically rewarding.
— Erik (@erikmullen08) May 27, 2019
Those that often call for austere conditions in prisons are those who do not have family or friends in one, or simply don't have a clue
— Steve Robertson (@HMPGovernor) February 22, 2017
I love what an about-face this is from Astral Weeks. They’re both totally Van Morrison records, but Astral Weeks is so austere and considered, and Moondance feels so loose and chilled out
— AK Lingus In Cartoon Form (@aklingus) October 1, 2018
Try using austere!
Which of the following words is MOST likely to be associated with something considered austere?
Example sentences from the Web for austere
The cells are austere—essentially hardened trailers—that cost about $40,000 each to build.
The site is not unlike North Korea itself: austere and more than a little bit dated-looking.
Multi-story hotel towers stand stripped of any ornamentation, and seem almost Soviet in their austere and honest decay.
“It looks spare and austere, but we spent 1,000 hours creating these,” Snoeren said.
The designs were meant to be “stark” and “austere,” the designers said, and there were no straight seams in the creations.
The sedateness of his deportment and the apparent regularity of his life delighted austere moralists.The History of England from the Accession of James II.|Thomas Babington Macaulay
Madame Torvestad, with an austere and imperious aspect, sat in her place; many gazed at her, but she maintained her composure.Skipper Worse|Alexander Lange Kielland
Hence those great devotions, those austere retreats from the world, of which some of them have given an example.Camille (La Dame aux Camilias)|Alexandre Dumas, fils
These are the followers of Levana, the austere goddess who takes up the new-born babe and perfects it by sorrow.Charles Baudelaire, His Life|Thophile Gautier
This type became more and more rigid and austere as the gathering shadows of the Dark Ages mantled on the minds of men.The Catacombs of Rome|William Henry Withrow