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superficial

[soo-per-fish-uh l] /ˌsu pərˈfɪʃ əl/
adjective
1.
being at, on, or near the surface:
a superficial wound.
2.
of or relating to the surface:
superficial measurement.
3.
external or outward:
a superficial resemblance.
4.
concerned with or comprehending only what is on the surface or obvious:
a superficial observer.
5.
shallow; not profound or thorough:
a superficial writer.
6.
apparent rather than real.
7.
insubstantial or insignificant:
superficial improvements.
Origin
late Middle English
1375-1425
1375-1425; late Middle English superfyciall < Late Latin superficiālis, equivalent to Latin superfici(ēs) superficies + -ālis -al1
Related forms
superficiality
[soo-per-fish-ee-al-i-tee] /ˌsu pərˌfɪʃ iˈæl ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
superficialness, noun
superficially, adverb
quasi-superficial, adjective
quasi-superficially, adverb
subsuperficial, adjective
subsuperficially, adverb
subsuperficialness, noun
unsuperficial, adjective
unsuperficially, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for superficiality
  • The striking thing about that old list, as well as today's student comments, is the utter superficiality of the complaints.
  • Their profound confidence in their judgement on the matter is matched only by their level of superficiality and ignorance.
  • On the contrary, superficiality is the norm, and everybody in the world knows it.
  • In taking on the entire history of jazz he doomed himself to incompleteness and superficiality.
  • But then he gives way to the self-righteousness and superficiality that let him down.
  • His writing is never dull, but nor is it superficial, in a field where both dullness and superficiality are common.
  • superficiality is endemic and the whole show is altogether rather boring.
  • But there's a bland superficiality to the proceedings that would be off-putting at the best of times.
  • Some comments in your columns have credited me with a superficiality which is more than my due.
  • Sharply conscious of the superficiality and cruelty of the adults in her world, she remains silent and subdued in their presence.
British Dictionary definitions for superficiality

superficial

/ˌsuːpəˈfɪʃəl/
adjective
1.
of, relating to, being near, or forming the surface: superficial bruising
2.
displaying a lack of thoroughness or care: a superficial inspection
3.
only outwardly apparent rather than genuine or actual: the similarity was merely superficial
4.
of little substance or significance; trivial: superficial differences
5.
lacking originality or profundity: the film's plot was quite superficial
6.
(of measurements) involving only the surface area
Derived Forms
superficiality (ˌsuːpəˌfɪʃɪˈælɪtɪ), (rare) superficialness, noun
superficially, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Late Latin superficiālis of the surface, from Latin superficies
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for superficiality

superficial

adj.

late 14c., in anatomical and mathematical uses, "of or relating to a surface," from Latin superficialis "of or pertaining to the surface," from superficies "surface," from super "above, over" (see super-) + facies "form, face" (see face (n.)). Meaning "not deep, without thorough understanding, cursory" (of perceptions, thoughts, etc.) first recorded early 15c. (implied in superficially "not thoroughly").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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superficiality in Medicine

superficial su·per·fi·cial (sōō'pər-fĭsh'əl)
adj.

  1. Of, affecting, or being on or near the surface.

  2. Not thorough.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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