Absurd Definition and Meaning: What Is Absurd?

Absurd Definition

ab·surd (b-sûrd, -zûrd)


  1. Ridiculously incongruous or unreasonable. See Synonyms at foolish.

  2. Utterly or obviously senseless, illogical, or untrue; contrary to all reason or common sense; laughably foolish or false: an absurd explanation.


  1. at variance with reason; manifestly false

  2. ludicrous; ridiculous


[via French from Latin absurdus dissonant, senseless, from ab-1 (intensive) + surdus dull-sounding, indistinct]

absurdity , absurdness n

absurdly  adv

the absurd

situation, state of affairs - the general state of things; the combination of circumstances at a given time; "the present international situation is dangerous"; "wondered how such a state of affairs had come about".

Adj. 1. absurd - inconsistent with reason or logic or common sense; "the absurd predicament of seeming to argue that virtue is highly desirable but intensely unpleasant"- Walter Lippman

illogical, unlogical - lacking in correct logical relation

2. absurd - incongruous; inviting ridicule; "the absurd excuse that the dog ate his homework"; "that's a cockeyed idea"; "ask a nonsensical question and get a nonsensical answer"; "a preposterous attempt to turn back the pages of history"; "her conceited assumption of universal interest in her rather dull children was ridiculous"

derisory, laughable, nonsensical, preposterous, ridiculous, cockeyed, ludicrous, idiotic

foolish - devoid of good sense or judgment; "foolish remarks"; "a foolish decision"


adjective ridiculous, crazy (informal), silly, incredible, outrageous, foolish, unbelievable, daft (informal), hilarious, ludicrous, meaningless, unreasonable, irrational, senseless, preposterous, laughable, funny, stupid, farcical, illogical, incongruous, comical, zany, idiotic, nonsensical, inane, dumb, cockamamie (slang, chiefly U.S.) They go to absurd lengths just to avoid paying a few pounds.

smart, wise, reasonable, intelligent, sensible, rational, logical, prudent, sagacious

Definition of ABSURDITY

1: the quality or state of being absurd : absurdness

2: something that is absurd

Examples of ABSURDITY

1: to say men can't cook as well as women is of course an absurdity

2: the absurdity of expecting a 98-year-old woman not in fit health to adequately supervise four six-year-olds

First Known Use of ABSURDITY


Related to ABSURDITY

Synonyms: folly, asininity, bêtise, fatuity, foolery, foppery, idiocy, imbecility, inanity, insanity, lunacy, stupidity

Antonyms: prudence, sagaciousness, sagacity, sageness, sanity, sapience, sensibleness, soundness, wisdom


  1. Ridiculously incongruous or unreasonable. See synonyms at foolish.

  2. Adjective: utterly or obviously senseless, illogical, or untrue; contrary to all reason or common sense; laughably foolish or false: an absurd explanation.

  3. Origin:
    1550–60;  < Latin absurdus  out of tune, uncouth, ridiculous. See ab-, surd

  4. Related forms

ab·surd·ly, adverb.

ab·surd·ness, noun.

su·per·ab·surd, adjective.

su·per·ab·surd·ly, adverb.

su·per·ab·surd·ness, noun.

  1. Synonyms
    1. irrational, silly, ludicrous, nonsensical. Absurd, ridiculous, preposterous all mean inconsistent with reason or common sense. Absurd means utterly opposed to truth or reason: an absurd claim. Ridiculous implies that something is fit only to be rejected or laughed at (not maliciously though), perhaps contemptuously: a ridiculous suggestion or proposition. Preposterous implies an extreme of foolishness: a preposterous proposal.

  1. Antonyms
    1. logical, sensible.

  • Even though humans are inclined to laugh at absurd and ridiculous statements / happenings, laughing in general is still a defect that should be controlled and overcome. For if one thinks about it, and particularly in more serious situations that were not indented to be humorous and were the laughed at takes offence, is there really anything funny with people making fools of themselves and making serious mistakes? Is it funny that a person is being deceived by his own thought processes? Why then do we find joy in such situations? Why do we add more misery upon his existing misery?

However, if one laughs at a heretic’s absurd propositions with the good intention or goal to convert him and those he has deceived through ridicule and instruction, then that is a good thing. But to be simply laughing for no apparent reason other than because one thinks that what he said is funny, even though he murders and deceives himself and others with his words, is obviously a defect, and if continued and not controlled, a sin. For example, if your father started to become demented in his old age and he one day suddenly started to make ridiculous statements, at first you may laugh thinking him joking, but once you had realized he is serious and that something is wrong with him, you will laugh no more.

Absurd sentence examples

  • BBC News | UK | a patently absurd invention?

  • Absurd to pretend that the water here is in any sense private.

  • Absurd notion from?

  • We need a review of the process, which seems absurd.

  • To have a city like London with no coherent system of government was manifestly absurd.

  • Absurd to imagine every single individual responsible in some way for the holocaust, all making the right choices.

  • Absurd accusation, that the nobles were conspiring with the enemy without, had made an impression on the " people.

  • Any attempt to reject its basic historicity even in matters of detail must now appear absurd.

  • I say that such a claim is palpably absurd.

  • Absurd to argue that general anxiety abruptly ceased in the ensuing weeks.

  • Absurd assertion that " no maths is involved " .

  • Amazon's promise that the volume ' usually ships within 24 hours ' is rendered absurd.

  • I began to feel that all of this were faintly absurd.

  • Absurd to suggest that a house could build itself.

  • It is absurd to suggest there is no God.

  • Absurd anomalies in the current system.

  • On the whole I agree with the lib dem principles but even they have policies that I find frankly absurd.

  • Absurd to deny the right to communicate.

  • Absurd conclusions.

  • It would, therefore, be utterly absurd for all the 25 national groupings to attempt to create their own states.

  • Absurd proposition, it is still debated by philosophers.

Absurd is an adjective meaning ridiculous or very funny. Here are some sample sentences.
"The parrot looked absurd dressed in trousers."
"His young nephew's description of how he tore his shirt was so absurd that we could not stop laughing for several minutes."

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