• WordNet 3.6
    • n cruelty a cruel act; a deliberate infliction of pain and suffering
    • n cruelty the quality of being cruel and causing tension or annoyance
    • n cruelty feelings of extreme heartlessness
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) was formed in 1866.
    • Cruelty A cruel and barbarous deed; inhuman treatment; the act of willfully causing unnecessary pain. "Cruelties worthy of the dungeons of the Inquisition.""Macaulay."
    • Cruelty The attribute or quality of being cruel; a disposition to give unnecessary pain or suffering to others; inhumanity; barbarity. "Pierced through the heart with your stern cruelty ."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n cruelty The quality of being cruel; the disposition to inflict suffering, physical or mental; indifference to or pleasure in the pain or distress of others; inhumanity.
    • n cruelty A cruel act; a barbarous deed; specifically, in law, an act inflicting severe pain and done with wilfulness and malice.
    • n cruelty Harshness or strength of physical impression; strength as of a smell.
    • n cruelty Synonyms Inhumanity, barbarity, savageness, ferocity, brutality.
    • ***


  • John Paul II
    John Paul II
    “The cemetery of the victims of human cruelty in our century is extended to include yet another vast cemetery, that of the unborn.”
  • Henri Becquerel
    Henri Becquerel
    “Decisiveness is often the art of timely cruelty.”
  • Bertrand Russell
    “Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “It is rude to silence a fool, and cruelty to let him go on.”
  • Andrea Dworkin
    “Being a Jew, one learns to believe in the reality of cruelty and one learns to recognize indifference to human suffering as a fact.”
  • John Bunyan
    “Hanging is too good for him said Mr. Cruelty.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OF. cruelté, F. cruauté, fr. L. crudelitas, fr. crudelis,. See Cruel


In literature:

Ivan had gained his end, and was not given to useless cruelty.
"Historic Tales, Vol. 8 (of 15)" by Charles Morris
The end of Jugurtha was one in accordance with the brutal cruelty of Rome, yet it was one which he richly deserved.
"Historic Tales, Volume 11 (of 15)" by Charles Morris
The kind cruelty of Commodus united them in death.
"The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 03" by Various
Still his cruelty could be turned into another almost more becoming feather.
"The Dark Tower" by Phyllis Bottome
The child cried, and the masters requested that he should name the author of such cruelty.
"My Recollections of Lord Byron" by Teresa Guiccioli
I can't get over our cruelty.
"Tongues of Conscience" by Robert Smythe Hichens
It was an evidence of cruelty, cold and calculated cruelty.
"The Prairie Mother" by Arthur Stringer
This thirst torture is abominable cruelty.
"The Horsewoman" by Alice M. Hayes
Theodore Slagheck, exercising power with barbarous cruelty and outrage, had himself taken the command of the castle of Westeras.
"The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 9" by Various
Numerous stories of his extravagant cruelties on this occasion have been told, which may safely be passed over as unworthy of credit.
"Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 4 of 8" by Various

In poetry:

But O the cruelty that strikes
My elder heart with dread
The writhing form upon the spikes,
The trickled pool of red!
"The Child Impaled" by John Le Gay Brereton
It were cruelty extreme,
It were some delirious dream,
That could see in this the cure
Of the ill that I endure.
"The Purgatory Of St. Patrick - Act III" by Denis Florence MacCarthy
O, not in cruelty, not in wrath,
The Reaper came that day;
'Twas an angel visited the green earth,
And took the flowers away.
"Voices Of The Night : The Reaper And The Flowers" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Nor, Gallia, shall thy varied mirth,
Thy store of all that graces earth,
Ere give a kind oblivion birth
To thy recorded cruelty.
"Lines On The Place De La Concorde At Paris," by Amelia Opie
Such torture, Albius, is my lot;
For, though a better mistress wooed me,
My Myrtale has captured me,
And with her cruelties subdued me!
"To Albius Tibullus" by Eugene Field
I will not ask one glance from thee,
Lest, fondly, I should linger yet,
And all thy scorn and cruelty
In that entrancing glance forget.
"Song.—I will not ask" by Louisa Stuart Costello

In news:

Summer Albritton, 19, was charged with cruelty toward a child.
Animal cruelty is no joke which is why, when a celebrity tries to turn it into one, they are met with a great deal of backlash.
Camacho could still face animal cruelty charges and claims he's losing $700 a day.
A media event arranged Monday evening by the Central California Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals had all the makings of a heartwarming dog-reunited-with-family story.
James "Ben" Landis, 36, of the 1000 block of Rickert Road, was arraigned on charges of simple assault and cruelty to animals stemming from two separate shooting incidents that occurred last month.
The Belleville News-Democrat reports that St Clair County prosecutors charged 46-year-old Terry Roy on Friday with a felony count of aggravated cruelty to animals.
Harrisburg blasted for cruelty complaints response.
Dog breeder on trial, accused of animal cruelty.
A dog breeder accused of hoarding 62 small dogs at a Cougar Mountain home is due in court next month to face animal cruelty charges.
Bauck had previously been cleared by a jury of two felony counts of cruelty to animals.
A Cleveland County man is facing animal cruelty charges after police say he tried to bury his dog alive.
A man who is accused of shooting a caged dog inside a Tulsa home faces animal cruelty and weapons charges.
Dog owner accused of cruelty agrees to give up ' Champ '.
A man who was caught strangling a hawk in a downtown Seattle park could face an animal cruelty charge.
SEATTLE (AP) — A man who was caught strangling a hawk in a downtown Seattle park could face an animal cruelty charge.