aloof·​ness | \ ə-ˈlüf-nəs How to pronounce aloofness (audio) \

Definition of aloofness

: the quality or state of being aloof or emotionally distant Her aloofness … did not endear her to the rest of the company …— Marybeth Kerrigan … there was an aloofness in him which the boys and I could never quite bridge.— Mildred D. Taylor His aloofness was … born more of insecurity than of arrogance …— David Cannadine … was respected for his military tenacity and his surprising aloofness from party favoritism.— Simon Schama

First Known Use of aloofness

1639, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aloofness

aloof entry 1 + -ness

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about aloofness

Time Traveler for aloofness

Time Traveler

The first known use of aloofness was in 1639

See more words from the same year

Statistics for aloofness

Cite this Entry

“Aloofness.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jan. 2021.

More from Merriam-Webster on aloofness

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for aloofness

Nglish: Translation of aloofness for Spanish Speakers

Comments on aloofness

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Words of Snow and Ice Quiz

  • image1037863653
  • Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!