cyn·i·cism | \ ˈsi-nə-ˌsi-zəm \

Definition of cynicism 

1 capitalized : the doctrine of the Cynics (see cynic sense 2)

2 : cynical attitude or quality Nothing could change her cynicism about politics. also : a cynical comment or act pungent cynicisms

Examples of cynicism in a Sentence

Nothing could change her cynicism about politics.

Recent Examples on the Web

Rereading her writing, I was struck by its extreme remoteness and cynicism (so, reports Armstrong, was Cattrall, who initially passed on the role of Samantha, finding the source material too depressing). Julia Felsenthal, Vogue, "Confessions of a Recovering Wannabe Carrie Bradshaw," 5 June 2018 Realize there’s a difference between skepticism and cynicism, that one is constructive and the other childish. Peggy Noonan, WSJ, "We Must Improve Our Trust," 31 May 2018 In other words, while Roth might’ve been bred for patriotism, that sentiment was retained not out of filial duty, but continually earned through his struggles against irony and cynicism. Joshua Cohen, The New Republic, "The Cult of Philip Roth," 24 May 2018 The reason appeared to be a mix of anger and cynicism. Vivienne Walt, Time, "Firebrand Cleric Moqtada al-Sadr Could Emerge as Kingmaker in Iraq's Lackluster Elections," 14 May 2018 Ullmann also tried to show students how a defense lawyer could avoid burnout or cynicism. Anne M. Hamilton,, "Extraordinary Life: Defense Attorney Took On Most Difficult Clients," 6 May 2018 This really shows the cynicism of the Hamas terror organization toward the citizens they are supposed to care for,’’ Conricus told reporters., "Israel bombs Gaza tunnel, closes key crossing after attack," 12 May 2018 All this plays into the scheme of things, however, as the final mix conveys the feeling of an ideal, larger-than-life past now lost in the cynicism of the modern age. Clarence Tsui, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Ashes and Ghosts of Tayug 1931' ('Dapol tan payawar na Tayug 1931'): Film Review," 24 Jan. 2018 By signing free agents, but fact: What free agents in the top 15 are going to want to be coached by Fred Hoiberg? — Tom, Dublin, Ohio That’s some strong cynicism for the offseason. K.c. Johnson,, "Bulls Q&A: Should Wendell Carter Jr. enter Hall of Fame this week or next? What's the starting lineup?," 12 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cynicism.' 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 cynicism

1663, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cynicism

see cynic

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Dictionary Entries near cynicism





cynic spasm



Statistics for cynicism

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for cynicism

The first known use of cynicism was in 1663

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English Language Learners Definition of cynicism

: cynical beliefs : beliefs that people are generally selfish and dishonest

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Comments on cynicism

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

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