Definition of vacuous in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈvakjʊəs/


1Having or showing a lack of thought or intelligence; mindless: a vacuous smile vacuous slogans
More example sentences
  • Choices based on the most minute reasoning but lacking any desire are vacuous.
  • You'll see their vacuous smiles, but their sad eyes will betray how hollow and unhappy they really are.
  • In short, what we have here is a veritable orgy of vacuous generalities and meaningless slogans.
blank, vacant, expressionless, deadpan, inscrutable, inexpressive, poker-faced, emotionless, impassive, absent, absent-minded, uninterested, empty, glassy, stony, wooden, motionless, lifeless, inanimate
empty-headed, unintelligent, without thought, brainless, dense, dull-witted, thick, vacant, inane, stupid
informal brain-dead
2 archaic Empty.
Example sentences
  • A vacuous, empty space is present in almost all locations throughout the film and successfully captures the enormous lack of love Barry feels.
  • On the second floor, I stepped into a vacuous, empty office space.
  • There was less than a minute of silence, and then two police cruisers tore down the vacuous street with their sirens on and stopped in front of the restaurant.



Pronunciation: /ˈvakjʊəsli/
Example sentences
  • It provides us no cover to assert vacuously that we are doing what the Supreme Court commands.
  • She was intelligent and coherent and not the least bit cosy or vacuously spiritual.
  • Your statement is probably vacuously true.


Pronunciation: /ˈvakjʊəsnəs/
Example sentences
  • But I don't think I can set aside my prejudices about the vacuousness of life in suburban sprawl.
  • I have been conducting an experiment aimed at analysing the intensifying silliness, stupidity and vacuousness of the world.
  • But on a much larger level, it just shows once again the utter vacuousness of our electoral system.


Mid 17th century (in the sense 'empty of matter'): from Latin vacuus 'empty' + -ous.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: vacu|ous

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Related Words