cretin

noun cre·tin \ ˈkrē-tᵊn \
|Updated on: 15 Jun 2018

Definition of cretin

1 often offensive : one afflicted with cretinism
2 informal : a stupid, vulgar, or insensitive person : clod, lout
  • … they started doing stupid boy stuff, like trying to untie our straps and pour sand down our bathing suits. Really, guys were such cretins sometimes.
  • —Marilyn Reynolds

cretinous

play \ˈkrē-tᵊn-əs\ adjective

Examples of cretin in a Sentence

  1. a cretin who's constantly forwarding e-mails filled with racist and sexist jokes

  2. in discussions anyone who disagrees with her is inevitably called a cretin

Recent Examples of cretin from the Web

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

Did You Know?

Chronic iodine deficiencies in diet can result in malfunctions of the thyroid gland, the gland that produces hormones necessary for normal human development. Some mountainous regions, such as parts of the Alps, do not naturally provide their inhabitants with a diet rich enough in iodine, and the resultant hypothyroidism causes stunted growth and mental retardation. In Franco-Provençal (the Romance speech of French Switzerland and adjacent areas of France), a person affected by hypothyroidism was called a cretin, literally, “wretch, innocent victim,” The word meant simply “Christian” and emphasized the hypothyroid victim's basic humanity.

Origin and Etymology of cretin

French crétin, from French dialect cretin, literally, wretch, innocent victim, from Latin christianus Christian

First Known Use: 1779

in the meaning defined at sense 1


Medical Dictionary

cretin

noun cre·tin \ ˈkrēt-ᵊn \

medical Definition of cretin

often offensive
: one affected with cretinism

cretinous

play \-ᵊn-əs\ adjective


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