nonchalant

adjective
non·​cha·​lant | \ ˌnän-shə-ˈlänt How to pronounce nonchalant (audio) ; ˈnän-shə-ˌlänt, -lənt \

Definition of nonchalant

: having an air of easy unconcern or indifference

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

Frequently Asked Questions About nonchalant

Is chalant the opposite of nonchalant?

There is no word chalant in English. Nonchalant comes from an Old French word nonchaloir, meaning "to disregard." That word comes from non-, meaning "not," + chaloir, meaning "to concern." If you want a word that means the opposite of nonchalant, both concerned and interested can do the job.

Is nonchalant a bad or negative thing?

Nonchalant can be either negative or positive. The word describes someone who is relaxed and calm in a way that shows that they do not care or are not worried about something. If someone is nonchalant about another person's pain or trouble, the word has a definite negative connotation. But if someone successfully undertaking a difficult task is described as nonchalant, their calmness and relaxed manner can be admirable. If they fail in that task, however, the fact that they were nonchalant will likely be a criticism and explanation for their failure.

What does it mean when someone is nonchalant?

Someone who is nonchalant is relaxed and calm, either because they do not care about something or because they are not worried about something.

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. See More
Recent Examples on the Web Star Elliot Page gives a characteristically fine performance as well, and the announcement of Viktor’s gender transition (mirroring the real-life announcement of Elliot Page’s own) is handled in a wonderfully supportive, nonchalant way. Jeff Ewing, Forbes, 15 June 2022 Many of those who have stayed appear nonchalant about the prospect of Russian rule. Los Angeles Times, 12 June 2022 Many of those who have stayed appear nonchalant about the prospect of Russian rule. Nabih Bulos, Anchorage Daily News, 12 June 2022 Shirley Doll held the lead around the first turn, a nonchalant Billie Jean Fisher behind her, hiding her determination with sunglasses. Kayla Dwyer, The Indianapolis Star, 26 May 2022 But Bridgers seemed pretty nonchalant about this sudden stardom thing, and for a large part of Friday's performance, didn't feel the need for flashy showmanship. Piet Levy, Journal Sentinel, 4 June 2022 While Brunson may be nonchalant about his forthcoming payday, his teammates understand what’s coming for him. Doyle Rader, Forbes, 28 May 2022 A month later, Herta was nonchalant about the April wipeout. Luca Evans, Los Angeles Times, 26 May 2022 Lathan and Diggs sell the deep friendship in their mutual casual manner -- a nonchalant hand on a shoulder, a secret smile. CNN, 14 Feb. 2022 See More

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.

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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The first known use of nonchalant was circa 1734

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Last Updated

27 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Nonchalant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nonchalant. Accessed 27 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for nonchalant

nonchalant

adjective
non·​cha·​lant | \ ˌnän-shə-ˈlänt How to pronounce nonchalant (audio) \

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

More from Merriam-Webster on nonchalant

Nglish: Translation of nonchalant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of nonchalant for Arabic Speakers

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