ab·​sent·​mind·​ed | \ ˌab-sənt-ˈmīn-dəd How to pronounce absentminded (audio) \

Definition of absentminded

1a : lost in thought and unaware of one's surroundings or actions : preoccupied was too absentminded to notice what time it was
b : tending to forget or fail to notice things : given to absence of mind (see absence sense 3) Her absentminded husband forgot their anniversary.
2 : indicative of or resulting from preoccupation or absence of mind gave an absentminded reply

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Other Words from absentminded

absentmindedly adverb
absentmindedness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for absentminded



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Choose the Right Synonym for absentminded

abstracted, preoccupied, absent, absentminded, distracted mean inattentive to what claims or demands consideration. abstracted implies absorption of the mind in something other than one's surroundings, and often suggests reflection on weighty matters. walking about with an abstracted air preoccupied often implies having one's attention so taken up by thoughts as to neglect others. too preoccupied with her debts to enjoy the meal absent stresses inability to fix the mind on present concerns due more to mental wandering than to concentration on other matters. an absent stare absentminded implies that the mind is fixed elsewhere and often refers to a habit of abstractedness. so absentminded, he's been known to wear mismatched shoes distracted may suggest an inability to concentrate caused by worry, sorrow, or anxiety. was too distracted by grief to continue working

Examples of absentminded in a Sentence

Her absentminded husband forgot their anniversary. She did the chores in an absentminded way.
Recent Examples on the Web But as happens to absentminded professors worldwide (at least according to my dear wife), my mind started to wander from the task at hand to something related to plants. Paul Cappiello, The Courier-Journal, "There's a reason there are so many types of plants. And it's all connected to ecology," 6 Mar. 2020 In their own seemingly innocent, absentminded way, slow drivers pose just as much of a threat to society as fast ones. Joe Queenan, WSJ, "Let’s Ticket the Slowpokes of Our Society," 12 Apr. 2018 Megyn Kelly’s dog took a brief sojourn in a total stranger’s lavish Montana villa after her absentminded caretakers unintentionally abandoned her there during their vacation in the Big Sky Country. Amanda Arnold, The Cut, "Megyn Kelly Accidentally Forgot Her Dog in a Stranger’s Home," 26 Mar. 2018 Over on the side, two men played an absentminded game of pool, more interested in the discussion than the 6 in the side pocket. The Root, "#TheRootTrip: Don’t Expect to Be Welcome at This Old-School Pool Hall Without a Little Home Training," 16 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'absentminded.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of absentminded

1824, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for absentminded

Time Traveler

The first known use of absentminded was in 1824

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Cite this Entry

“Absentminded.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/absentminded. Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for absentminded


ab·​sent·​mind·​ed | \ ˌab-sənt-ˈmīn-dəd How to pronounce absentminded (audio) \

Kids Definition of absentminded

: tending to forget or not pay attention Two absentminded students forgot their homework today.

Other Words from absentminded

absentmindedly adverb He absentmindedly drove past his exit.

More from Merriam-Webster on absentminded

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for absentminded

Nglish: Translation of absentminded for Spanish Speakers

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