tor·​tur·​ous | \ ˈtȯrch-rəs How to pronounce torturous (audio) , ˈtȯr-chə- \

Definition of torturous

1a : very unpleasant or painful a torturous day torturous self-doubts
b : causing torture torturous inquisitions
2 : painfully difficult or slow the torturous course of the negotiations

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from torturous

torturously adverb

Examples of torturous in a Sentence

relatives had to make the torturous decision to disconnect the patient's life-support system the post-infection treatment for rabies was as notoriously torturous as the disease itself
Recent Examples on the Web For women especially, Teigen says, the silence around fertility issues makes a painful experience into a torturous one. Jenny Singer, Glamour, "Chrissy Teigen Lost Her Child. Now, She’s Doing A Fertility Campaign.," 20 Apr. 2021 Sam met Isaiah Bradley, known in Marvel comics as the first Black Captain America, who, in the MCU, was a Black man who faked his death after being subjected to torturous experimentation with the super-solder serum. Ew Staff,, "What to Watch this Weekend: RuPaul's Drag Race season 13 crosses the finish line," 23 Apr. 2021 The decisions could become even more torturous when a third vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson — which is expected to gain regulatory approval this weekend — joins the mix, though with only a trickle of supply at first. Washington Post, "Vaccine lotteries and personal appeals: The medically vulnerable find their priority status slipping away," 26 Feb. 2021 Why bother with torturous stilettos when a comfy flat will do the trick? Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Ariana Grande Is Ready for Sky-High Heels Again," 29 Mar. 2021 He was admitted to a hospital near his college, starting a torturous four-month series of ups and downs for Bush and her family. Tyler Hicks, Chron, "'I have to keep going': A Houston nurse returns to work after losing her brother to COVID," 16 Mar. 2021 Reading through economics papers is often torturous for me. Erik Kobayashi-solomon, Forbes, "Climate Catalysts: What’s A Planet Worth?," 9 Mar. 2021 Olsen’s Wanda revisited the tragic source of her psychic burden, and the somewhat torturous exposition regarding the birth of the Hex. Michael Phillips,, "Commentary: Was ‘WandaVision’ worth the wait?," 5 Mar. 2021 Nonprofits are also racing to deploy young volunteers who have the patience and computer savvy to overcome the torturous vaccine portals that have bewildered many people in search of shots. Star Tribune, "Nonprofits stepping up to bolster COVID vaccination efforts," 5 Mar. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of torturous

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about torturous

Time Traveler for torturous

Time Traveler

The first known use of torturous was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for torturous

Last Updated

7 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Torturous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for torturous



English Language Learners Definition of torturous

: causing great pain or suffering

More from Merriam-Webster on torturous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for torturous

Nglish: Translation of torturous for Spanish Speakers

Comments on torturous

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Star Wars Words Quiz

  • cu jedi training
  • The bounty portion of bounty hunters (such as Boba Fett) comes from a Latin word meaning
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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