Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

qualm

play
noun \ˈkwäm also ˈkwȯm or ˈkwälm\

Simple Definition of qualm

  • : a feeling of doubt or uncertainty about whether you are doing the right thing

Full Definition of qualm

  1. 1 :  a sudden attack of illness, faintness, or nausea

  2. 2 :  a sudden access of usually disturbing emotion (as doubt or fear)

  3. 3 :  a feeling of uneasiness about a point especially of conscience or propriety

qualmy adjective

Examples of qualm

  1. He accepted their offer without a qualm.

  2. <she has no qualms about downloading pirated music files from the Internet>



Origin of qualm

origin unknown


First Known Use: circa 1530

Synonym Discussion of qualm

qualm, scruple, compunction, demur mean a misgiving about what one is doing or going to do. qualm implies an uneasy fear that one is not following one's conscience or better judgment <no qualms about plagiarizing>. scruple implies doubt of the rightness of an act on grounds of principle <no scruples against buying stolen goods>. compunction implies a spontaneous feeling of responsibility or compassion for a potential victim <had compunctions about lying>. demur implies hesitation caused by objection to an outside suggestion or influence <accepted her decision without demur>.

QUALM Defined for Kids

qualm

play
noun \ˈkwäm, ˈkwälm\

Definition of qualm

  1. :  a feeling of doubt or uncertainty especially in matters of right and wrong <She had no qualms about lying.>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up qualm? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 11, 2016

the holder of an office

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

2.2 pounds 16.96 pounds 100 pounds 196.5 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ