Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

obtuse

[uhb-toos, -tyoos]
See more synonyms for obtuse on Thesaurus.com
adjective
  1. not quick or alert in perception, feeling, or intellect; not sensitive or observant; dull.
  2. not sharp, acute, or pointed; blunt in form.
  3. (of a leaf, petal, etc.) rounded at the extremity.
  4. indistinctly felt or perceived, as pain or sound.
Show More

Origin of obtuse

1500–10; < Latin obtūsus dulled (past participle of obtundere), equivalent to ob- ob- + tūd-, variant stem of tundere to beat + -tus past participle suffix, with dt > s
Related formsob·tuse·ly, adverbob·tuse·ness, nounsub·ob·tuse, adjectivesub·ob·tuse·ly, adverbsub·ob·tuse·ness, noun
Can be confusedabstruse obtuse

Synonyms

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

densedopeydulldumbinsensitiveopaquestolidthickunintelligentuncomprehendingimperceptiveroundrounded

Examples from the Web for obtuse

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples


British Dictionary definitions for obtuse

obtuse

adjective
  1. mentally slow or emotionally insensitive
  2. maths
    1. (of an angle) lying between 90° and 180°
    2. (of a triangle) having one interior angle greater than 90°
  3. not sharp or pointed
  4. indistinctly felt, heard, etc; dullobtuse pain
  5. (of a leaf or similar flat part) having a rounded or blunt tip
Show More
Derived Formsobtusely, adverbobtuseness, noun

Word Origin

C16: from Latin obtūsus dulled, past participle of obtundere to beat down; see obtund
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

Word Origin and History for obtuse

adj.

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.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

obtuse in Medicine

obtuse

(ŏb-tōōs, əb-)
adj.
  1. Lacking quickness of perception or intellect.
  2. Not sharp or acute; blunt.
Show More
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.