CYNIC, CYNICAL, a. [Gr., canine, a dog.] Having the qualities of a surly dog; snarling; captious; surly; currish; austere.Cynic spasm, a kind of convulsion, in which the patient imitates the howling of dogs.
Pertaining to the dog-star. The year determined by the heliacal rising of the dog-star (365 days 6 hours) was called the Sothic, Cynic, or Canicular year; that of 365 days, (the civil year,) was called the vague year, from its continually changing in relation to the seasons: the period from one coincidence of the Sothic and civil years to another, (1460 Sothic and 1461 civil years,) was called the Sothic period and the cynic cycle.
A man of a canine temper; a surly or snarling man or philosopher; a follower of Diogenes; a misanthrope. – Shak.
- Having the qualities of a
surly dog; snarling; captious; currish.
- One of a sect or school of philosophers
founded by Antisthenes, and of whom Diogenes was a disciple. The
first Cynics were noted for austere lives and their scorn for
social customs and current philosophical opinions. Hence the term
Cynic symbolized, in the popular judgment, moroseness, and
contempt for the views of others.
- Pertaining to the Dog Star; as, the
cynic, or Sothic, year; cynic cycle.
- One who holds views resembling those
of the Cynics; a snarler; a misanthrope; particularly, a person
who believes that human conduct is directed, either consciously
or unconsciously, wholly by self-interest or self-indulgence, and
that appearances to the contrary are superficial and
- Belonging to the sect of philosophers
called cynics; having the qualities of a cynic; pertaining to, or
resembling, the doctrines of the cynics.
- Given to sneering at rectitude and the
conduct of life by moral principles; disbelieving in the reality
of any human purposes which are not suggested or directed by
self-interest or self-indulgence; as, a cynical man who
scoffs at pretensions of integrity; characterized by such
opinions; as, cynical views of human nature.