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callous Line breaks: cal|lous
Pronunciation: /ˈkaləs/

Definition of callous in English:


Showing or having an insensitive and cruel disregard for others: his callous comments about the murder made me shiver
More example sentences
  • But despite the ineluctable force of modernization it's surprising how strongly and deeply rooted this callous disregard for women is.
  • Sadly, there is big money in rare species, but this is a very cruel and callous type of crime, and one we are anxious to stamp out.
  • By defending his blundering ways, this self-serving little weasel shows callous disregard for that poor little girl.
heartless, unfeeling, uncaring, cold, cold-hearted, hard, as hard as nails, hard-hearted, with a heart of stone, stony-hearted, insensitive, lacking compassion, hard-bitten, cold-blooded, hardened, case-hardened, harsh, cruel, ruthless, brutal;
unsympathetic, uncharitable, indifferent, unconcerned, unsusceptible, insensible, bloodless, soulless
informal hard-boiled
rare indurate, indurated, marble-hearted


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variant spelling of callus.


Late Middle English (in the Latin sense): from Latin callosus 'hard-skinned'.

  • The Latin source callosus means ‘hard-skinned’, and the word was originally used in this sense. The transference to ‘insensitive to others’ feelings', which happened in the late 17th century, has a parallel in thick-skinned. Callus (mid 16th century), for hardened skin, is from the same word.

Words that rhyme with callous

Callas, callus, Dallas, Pallas
Definition of callous in:
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