nonchalant

adjective
non·cha·lant | \ˌnän-shə-ˈlänt; ˌnän-shə-ˌlänt, -lənt\

Definition of nonchalant 

: having an air of easy unconcern or indifference

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Other Words from nonchalant

nonchalantly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for nonchalant

cool, composed, collected, unruffled, imperturbable, nonchalant mean free from agitation or excitement. cool may imply calmness, deliberateness, or dispassionateness. kept a cool head composed implies freedom from agitation as a result of self-discipline or a sedate disposition. the composed pianist gave a flawless concert collected implies a concentration of mind that eliminates distractions especially in moments of crisis. the nurse stayed calm and collected unruffled suggests apparent serenity and poise in the face of setbacks or in the midst of excitement. harried but unruffled imperturbable implies coolness or assurance even under severe provocation. the speaker remained imperturbable despite the heckling nonchalant stresses an easy coolness of manner or casualness that suggests indifference or unconcern. a nonchalant driver

Stay Cool With the History of Nonchalant

Since "nonchalant" comes ultimately from Latin words meaning "not" and "be warm," it's no surprise that the word is all about keeping one's cool. The French word nonchalant, which we borrowed around 1734, has essentially the same meaning as our English word and was derived in Old French from a verb, "nonchaloir," which meant "to disregard." "Nonchaloir" in turn combines the negative "non-" with "chaloir," which means "to concern" and comes from the Latin calēre ("to be warm"). "Unconcerned" is one synonym of "nonchalant," along with "casual," "complacent," and "insouciant."

Examples of nonchalant in a Sentence

In those stories, we already find the qualities the world would come to know as "Kafkaesque": the nonchalant intrusion of the bizarre and horrible into everyday life, the subjection of ordinary people to an inscrutable fate. — Adam Kirsch, New York Times Book Review, 4 Jan. 2009 … watch his iron-backed posture as he rides a horse and listen to the nonchalant way in which, not barking but speaking he says "Fire" to the line of infantry, like someone asking for a light. — John Updike, New Yorker, 30 Sept. 2002 He and Anita (and an ancient, nonchalant Lhasa apso … ) live in a gated community, surrounded by high, vine-covered walls, redolent of Wrigley, that embrace a golf club and an attractive thicket of large houses … — Frank Deford, Sports Illustrated, 19 Mar. 2001 It was thrilling to watch them, the regulars, so nonchalant, so composed as they slipped from Senate cloakroom to Senate hideaway, sharing jokes with powerful men old enough to be their fathers. — Ward Just, New York Times Book Review, 28 May 1989 He was surprisingly nonchalant about winning the award. She faced the crowd with the nonchalant ease of an experienced speaker. The team may have been somewhat nonchalant at the beginning of the season, but they now know that they need to work hard.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Though Lang Lang gave no interviews and his Facebook page seemed downright nonchalant, the young female fan base that habitually rushes the stage at his concerts was in evidence. David Patrick Stearns, Philly.com, "Lang Lang's recovery: Will he ever play in Philly again?," 12 July 2018 The bright canary yellow hue and green collar added a nonchalant high-low vibe to Lima’s elevated post-runway garb. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Adriana Lima Turns the Brazil Soccer Jersey Into a Couture Fashion Week Statement," 2 July 2018 In another campaign image, the ladies pose on front of a rooftop pool overlooking L.A. as the five-year-old gives her best nonchalant hair flip to the camera. Kaitlyn Frey, PEOPLE.com, "North West Makes Modeling Debut Alongside Kim Kardashian and Kris Jenner in New Fendi Campaign," 9 July 2018 The House seemed to have been similarly nonchalant. Robert Mitchell, Washington Post, "A hungry congressman didn’t get the breakfast he ordered. So he shot the waiter.," 23 June 2018 Cal Fire officials were not as nonchalant, warning that even with cooler temperatures forecast for this week the danger remains high, especially with the July 4 holiday on Wednesday expected to bring out countless people with lighters and matches. Julia Sclafani And Sam Stanton, sacbee, "County Fire is the state's largest blaze, tearing through dry grass, oak and brush," 2 July 2018 Hollywood has generally been kind of nonchalant about its portrayal of marijuana use on the screen. Ed Symkus, BostonGlobe.com, "Pot’s legal in Massachusetts, so celebrate with some stoner flicks.," 28 June 2018 Tarek has acted similarly nonchalant about the untraditional arrangement. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "What Really Led to Christina and Tarek El Moussa's Divorce," 25 June 2018 Bridgeport police have released a video of a nonchalant package thief in hopes the public can identify her. Christine Dempsey, courant.com, "Wanted: Bridgeport’s Package-Stealing, Casual Crook," 9 May 2018

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

circa 1734, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for nonchalant

French, from Old French, from present participle of nonchaloir to disregard, from non- + chaloir to concern, from Latin calēre to be warm — more at lee

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Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for nonchalant

The first known use of nonchalant was circa 1734

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More Definitions for nonchalant

nonchalant

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of nonchalant

: relaxed and calm in a way that shows that you do not care or are not worried about anything

nonchalant

adjective
non·cha·lant | \ˌnän-shə-ˈlänt \

Kids Definition of nonchalant

: showing or having a relaxed manner free from concern or excitement He was surprisingly nonchalant about winning the award.

Other Words from nonchalant

nonchalantly \-ˈlänt-lē \ adverb

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