Negative Adjectives to Describe People

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Full list of words from this list:

  1. arrogant
    having or showing feelings of unwarranted importance
    Arrogant people are "full of themselves." They think they are the best and they constantly remind people of how "great" they are.
  2. boorish
    ill-mannered and coarse in behavior or appearance
    A boorish person is a slob. They are rude, uncultured and disgusting. They have no manners. They might have little education too. Think of a boar which is a wild male pig.
  3. cantankerous
    stubbornly obstructive and unwilling to cooperate
    Cantankerous people are stubborn. They rudely refuse to go along with the flow. Cantankerous people are irritating to work with.
  4. cunning
    marked by skill in deception
    Cunning people are sneaky, but they are especially good at it.
  5. cynical
    believing the worst of human nature and motives
    A cynical person tends to be suspicious of other people's motives and behaviors. Any good act shown to them is often believed to be done for a different reason. For example, if someone does a favor for a cynical person, the cynic is likely to think, "She is only being nice to me, because she wants something from me."
  6. domineering
    tending to rule in a cruel manner
    A domineering person is bossy. They try to dominate every situation and relationship.
  7. indolent
    disinclined to work or exertion
    Indolent people are lazy. Their laziness is so extreme that they basically refuse to work even when asked and pleaded with.
  8. intolerant
    unwilling to tolerate difference of opinion
    An intolerant person does not like the opinions an beliefs of other people. Intolerant people are often bigoted and prejudiced.
  9. irresponsible
    showing lack of care for consequences
    Irresponsible people are not responsible or trustworthy. They often break things that belong to other people and care very little about the situation. They are late to things and offer no apologies for it.
  10. Machiavellian
    of or relating to amoral or conniving political principles
    A Machiavellian personality is one that complex and sneaky. They are selfish and try to get what they want through crafty and mean actions. Machiavellian types are cold and detached--they seem to have no real feelings toward anyone else. In this way, they don't mind hurting other people's feelings as long as they are getting what they desire.
  11. miserly
    characterized by or indicative of lack of generosity
    Miserly people love money and they don't like to spend it. They are stingy, mean and highly protective of their money. Misers would never donate any money to anyone--ever! The classic miser is Scrooge from Charles Dickens's "A Christmas Carol."
  12. obsessive
    a person who has compulsive preoccupations
    Obsessive people have unnaturally high feelings toward certain things. An obsessive boyfriend might stalk his girlfriend and check her text messages on her phone to make sure that she is not cheating on him. Obsession is liking and needing something times 10!
  13. patronizing
    characteristic of those who treat others with arrogance
    "That's pretty good for a kid." Have you ever heard this "compliment?" Well, if you have, you've been patronized.

    Another example would be if you failed a test, but your parent said, "Well, I know you tried your best, but you still failed." It seems like a compliment,'s really a put down.
  14. pompous
    puffed up with vanity
    A pompous person thinks they are awesome and self-important. Their arrogance is flaunted around for all to see. Pompous is sometimes paired with the word, "jerk." For example, "Did see the way that pompous jerk cut in line and smiled at everyone?"
  15. procrastinator
    someone who postpones work
    A procrastinator is someone who puts off tasks. They feel that they will do it later--most often, it never gets done.
  16. sullen
    showing a brooding ill humor
    If you are sullen, you are unhappy and everyone knows it. You sulk around with a frown and perhaps you're even mean to people.
  17. surly
    unfriendly and inclined toward anger or irritation
    A surly person is just plain mean. Their meaness is pretty scary too. They might be in a bad mood or maybe they're always angry. It's hard to tell what they're mad about, they just are.
  18. timid
    showing fear and lack of courage
    "Timid as a titmouse" is how some people use the word. Basically, timid means that you are so weak and lacking self-confidence that you are frozen in fear. A timid person has a very tough time asking someone out on a date.
  19. vulgar
    conspicuously and tastelessly indecent
    A vulgar person is disgusting. They might use bad language or say things that are outrageously inappropriate.
  20. shiftless
    lacking ambition or initiative
    A shiftless person has no ambition. His "get-up-an-go" got up and went, as my Mom used to say. They are lazy and look for handouts rather than work for what they have.
Created on March 5, 2013 (updated March 13, 2013)

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