adjective, va·guer, va·guest.
  1. not clearly or explicitly stated or expressed: vague promises.
  2. indefinite or indistinct in nature or character, as ideas or feelings: a vague premonition of disaster.
  3. not clear or distinct to the sight or any other sense; perceptible or recognizable only in an indefinite way: vague shapes in the dark; vague murmurs behind a door.
  4. not definitely established, determined, confirmed, or known; uncertain: a vague rumor; The date of his birth is vague.
  5. (of persons) not clear or definite in thought, understanding, or expression: vague about his motives; a vague person.
  6. (of the eyes, expression, etc.) showing lack of clear perception or understanding: a vague stare.

Origin of vague

1540–50; (< Middle French) < Latin vagus wandering
Related formsvague·ly, adverbvague·ness, nounun·vague, adjectiveun·vague·ly, adverbun·vague·ness, noun

Synonyms for vague Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for vaguest


  1. (of statements, meaning, etc) not explicit; imprecisevague promises
  2. not clearly perceptible or discernible; indistincta vague idea; a vague shape
  3. not clearly or definitely established or knowna vague rumour
  4. (of a person or his expression) demonstrating lack of precision or clear thinking; absent-minded
Derived Formsvaguely, adverbvagueness, noun

Word Origin for vague

C16: via French from Latin vagus wandering, of obscure origin
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 vaguest



1540s, from Middle French vague, from Latin vagus "wandering, rambling, vacillating, vague," of unknown origin. Related: Vagueness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper