1) ADJ-GRADED (emphasis) If you describe something as atrocious, you are emphasizing that its quality is very bad.

I remain to this day fluent in Hebrew, while my Arabic is atrocious...

The food here is atrocious.

appalling, abominable
Derived words:
atrociously ADV ADV adj/-ed, ADV after v

He had written the note from memory, word perfect, and spelled atrociously.

2) ADJ-GRADED If you describe someone's behaviour or their actions as atrocious, you mean that it is unacceptable because it is extremely violent or cruel.

The judge said he had committed atrocious crimes against women...

The treatment of the prisoners by their captors is atrocious and breaks all international laws.

3) ADJ If you say that weather conditions are atrocious, you mean they are very bad, for example that it is extremely cold, wet, or windy.

...closed roads and atrocious weather: snow in the mountains, torrential rain elsewhere.


English dictionary. 2008.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Atrocious — A*tro cious, a. [L. atrox, atrocis, cruel, fierce: cf. F. atroce.] 1. Extremely heinous; full of enormous wickedness; as, atrocious guilt or deeds. [1913 Webster] 2. Characterized by, or expressing, great atrocity. [1913 Webster] Revelations …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • atrocious — atro·cious /ə trō shəs/ adj: characterized by extreme cruelty or viciousness atrocious assault and battery Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. atrocious …   Law dictionary

  • atrocious — [adj1] outrageous; widely condemned awful, bad, barbaric, beastly, desperate, diabolical, fiendish, flagrant, godawful*, grody*, gross*, hairy*, heinous, lousy, monstrous, nefarious, rotten, scandalous, shocking, villainous, wicked; concepts… …   New thesaurus

  • atrocious — [ə trō′shəs] adj. [< L atrox, (gen. atrocis), fierce, cruel < ater, black + ox < ? base of oculus, EYE] 1. very cruel, evil, brutal, etc. 2. appalling or dismaying 3. very bad, unpleasant, offensive, inferior, etc. [an atrocious joke]… …   English World dictionary

  • atrocious — 1660s, from stem of L. atrox fierce, savage, cruel (see ATROCITY (Cf. atrocity)) + OUS (Cf. ous). Colloquial sense very bad is late 19c. Related: Atrociously; atrociousness …   Etymology dictionary

  • atrocious — heinous, monstrous, *outrageous Analogous words: *flagrant, gross, rank, glaring: nefarious, flagitious, infamous, iniquitous, *vicious: barbaric, savage, barbarous, *barbarian Antonyms: humane: noble (see MORAL) Contrasted words: righteous …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • atrocious — ► ADJECTIVE 1) horrifyingly wicked. 2) informal extremely bad or unpleasant. DERIVATIVES atrociously adverb. ORIGIN from Latin atrox cruel …   English terms dictionary

  • atrocious — adjective Etymology: Latin atroc , atrox gloomy, atrocious, from atr , ater black + oc , ox (akin to Greek ōps eye) more at eye Date: 1658 1. extremely wicked, brutal, or cruel ; barbaric 2. appalling, horrifying < the atrocious weapons of modern …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • atrocious — atrociously, adv. atrociousness, n. /euh troh sheuhs/, adj. 1. extremely or shockingly wicked, cruel, or brutal: an atrocious crime. 2. shockingly bad or tasteless; dreadful; abominable: an atrocious painting; atrocious manners. [1660 70;… …   Universalium

  • atrocious — adjective extremely bad or showing no ability to do something at all: atrocious weather | Her singing was atrocious. | atrocious housing conditions atrociously adverb atrociousness noun (U) …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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