[ soo-per-sil-ee-uhs ]
See synonyms for supercilious on
  1. haughtily disdainful or contemptuous, as a person or a facial expression.

Origin of supercilious

First recorded in 1520–30; from Latin superciliōsus; see supercilium, -ous

Other words for supercilious

Opposites for supercilious

Other words from supercilious

  • su·per·cil·i·ous·ly, adverb
  • su·per·cil·i·ous·ness, noun
  • un·su·per·cil·i·ous, adjective
  • un·su·per·cil·i·ous·ly, adverb
  • un·su·per·cil·i·ous·ness, noun

Words Nearby supercilious Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use supercilious in a sentence

  • The instant lift of Florimond's eyebrows was full of insolent, supercilious disdain.

    St. Martin's Summer | Rafael Sabatini
  • Would it not have been possible to live in retirement without drawing upon himself the accusation of supercilious hauteur?

  • English notions of what is becoming don't hold good here; you can't stop a man like Wilkinson with a supercilious look.

    The Girl From Keller's | Harold Bindloss

British Dictionary definitions for supercilious


/ (ˌsuːpəˈsɪlɪəs) /

  1. displaying arrogant pride, scorn, or indifference

Origin of supercilious

C16: from Latin superciliōsus, from supercilium eyebrow; see superciliary

Derived forms of supercilious

  • superciliously, adverb
  • superciliousness, noun

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