mis·​an·​throp·​ic ˌmi-sᵊn-ˈthrä-pik How to pronounce misanthropic (audio)
: of, relating to, or characteristic of a misanthrope
He was shunned because of his miserable misanthropic nature.
: marked by a hatred or contempt for humankind
The moral corruption he saw around him made him misanthropic.
misanthropically adverb

Did you know?

Jonathan Swift was famous for the misanthropy of works such as Gulliver's Travels which make fun of all kinds of human foolishness. But in spite of his apparent misanthropic attitude, he spent a third of his income on founding a hospital and another third on other charities—certainly not the acts of a true misanthrope. Today we often use synonyms such as cynic and grinch for misanthropic types—while hoping we don't meet too many of them.

Choose the Right Synonym for misanthropic

cynical, misanthropic, pessimistic mean deeply distrustful.

cynical implies having a sneering disbelief in sincerity or integrity.

cynical about politicians' motives

misanthropic suggests a rooted distrust and dislike of human beings and their society.

a solitary and misanthropic artist

pessimistic implies having a gloomy, distrustful view of life.

pessimistic about the future

Examples of misanthropic in a Sentence

a misanthropic outlook on life that probably stems from a childhood filled with physical and emotional abuse
Recent Examples on the Web In that, Loder is witty, mischievous and somehow appealingly misanthropic, qualities that Dinklage commands with ease through his signature piercing gaze and intensely baritone voice. Tomris Laffly, Variety, 6 Mar. 2024 In the misanthropic world of Curb, everyone is a pathologically annoying product of their own pettiness, ignorance, prejudices, and hangups—Larry more than most. TIME, 2 Feb. 2024 Duchovny stars alongside Logan Marshall-Green in a two-hander about a misanthropic man dying of cancer and his sappy son, who craves love from his dad. Leo Barraclough, Variety, 18 Dec. 2023 But it’s also rooted in the show’s underlying emotional tension: the inability of a misanthropic genius like Rick to connect, or even honestly communicate, with his own family. Alison Herman, Variety, 5 Nov. 2023 This, on the other hand, actually reflects my experience of living in Southern California, where even my most jaded, misanthropic friends are constantly trying to drag me to yoga classes. Emma Specter, Vogue, 6 Sep. 2023 Gary Oldman stars as Jackson Lamb, the bright yet misanthropic leader of the spies. Mckinley Franklin, Variety, 20 Sep. 2023 Winona Ryder, who played misanthropic goth Lydia Deetz in the original movie, is also reprising her role in the project. Saman Shafiq, USA TODAY, 21 July 2023 The misanthropic bunch profiled in Moyn’s book is as radically unlike the upbeat liberals of the familiar stereotype as possible. Becca Rothfeld, Washington Post, 11 Aug. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'misanthropic.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1762, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of misanthropic was in 1762

Dictionary Entries Near misanthropic

Cite this Entry

“Misanthropic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/misanthropic. Accessed 18 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition


mis·​an·​throp·​ic ˌmis-ᵊn-ˈthräp-ik How to pronounce misanthropic (audio)
: of, relating to, or characteristic of a misanthrope
: marked by a hatred or contempt for humankind

More from Merriam-Webster on misanthropic

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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