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cruelty

[kroo-uh l-tee] /ˈkru əl ti/
noun, plural cruelties for 3.
1.
the state or quality of being cruel.
2.
cruel disposition or conduct.
3.
a cruel act.
4.
Law. conduct by a spouse that causes grievous bodily harm or mental suffering.
Origin
1175-1225
1175-1225; Middle English cruelte < Anglo-French, Old French < Latin crūdēlitāt- (stem of crūdēlitās). See cruel, -ity
Related forms
anticruelty, adjective
self-cruelty, noun, plural self-cruelties.
Synonyms
1. harshness, brutality, ruthlessness, barbarity, inhumanity, atrocity.
Antonyms
2, 3. kindness.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for anticruelty

cruelty

/ˈkruːəltɪ/
noun (pl) -ties
1.
deliberate infliction of pain or suffering
2.
the quality or characteristic of being cruel
3.
a cruel action
4.
(law) conduct that causes danger to life or limb or a threat to bodily or mental health, on proof of which a decree of divorce may be granted
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 anticruelty

cruelty

n.

early 13c., from Old French crualté (12c., Modern French cruauté), from Latin crudelitatem (nominative crudelitas) "cruelty," from crudelis (see cruel).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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