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Denotation vs. Connotation

absent-minded

or absentminded

[ab-suh nt-mahyn-did] /ˈæb səntˈmaɪn dɪd/
adjective
1.
so lost in thought that one does not realize what one is doing, what is happening, etc.; preoccupied to the extent of being unaware of one's immediate surroundings.
Origin of absent-minded
1850-1855
1850-55
Related forms
absent-mindedly, adverb
absent-mindedness, noun
Synonyms
withdrawn, musing, daydreaming, dreamy, forgetful, distracted. Absent-minded, abstracted, oblivious all mean inattentive to immediate surroundings. Absent-minded suggests an unintentional wandering of the mind from the present: an absent-minded committee member. Abstracted implies that the mind has been drawn away from the immediate present by reflection upon some engrossing subject: an abstracted air. Oblivious implies absorption in some thought that causes one to be completely forgetful of or unaware of one's surroundings: oblivious of danger.
Antonyms
attentive, alert, heedful, observant.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for absent-mindedly
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Mr. Kronborg, quite innocent of her intentions, replied kindly and absent-mindedly.

    Song of the Lark Willa Cather
  • "Oh, she has declared her intention," murmured Lingard, absent-mindedly.

    The Rescue Joseph Conrad
  • He was playing with his carved ivory baton, absent-mindedly, as if he were conscious of his inferiority in literary matters.

    The Confession of a Fool August Strindberg
  • He had absent-mindedly strayed into the wrong continent and the wrong creed.

    A Miscellany of Men G. K. Chesterton
  • I was first to finish, however, and getting up I absent-mindedly picked up her umbrella and started for the door.

  • "Possibly," remarked Pierre, looking about him absent-mindedly.

    War and Peace Leo Tolstoy
  • When Febrer was left alone he took down his gun, and stood near the door for a long time examining it absent-mindedly.

    The Dead Command Vicente Blasco Ibez
  • "84, Cavendish Mansions," murmured Mr. Hoggins absent-mindedly.

    The Angel of Terror Edgar Wallace
  • "I should think Brown was synonymous with synopsis," said I absent-mindedly.

    Latitude 19 degree Mrs. Schuyler Crowninshield
British Dictionary definitions for absent-mindedly

absent-minded

adjective
1.
preoccupied; forgetful; inattentive
Derived Forms
absent-mindedly, adverb
absent-mindedness, noun
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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