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[kawr-ser, kohr-] /ˈkɔr sər, ˈkoʊr-/
adjective, Mathematics
of or relating to a topology on a topological space whose open sets are included among the open sets of a second specified topology on the space.
Compare finer.
Origin of coarser
coarse + -er4


[kawrs, kohrs] /kɔrs, koʊrs/
adjective, coarser, coarsest.
composed of relatively large parts or particles:
The beach had rough, coarse sand.
lacking in fineness or delicacy of texture, structure, etc.:
The stiff, coarse fabric irritated her skin.
harsh; grating.
lacking delicacy, taste, or refinement; unpolished:
He had coarse manners but an absolutely first-rate mind.
of inferior or faulty quality; common; base.
vulgar; obscene; crude:
His coarse language angered us.
(of metals) unrefined.
(of a metal file) having the maximum commercial grade of coarseness.
1550-60; earlier cors(e), course, cowarce; of obscure origin
Related forms
coarsely, adverb
coarseness, noun
uncoarse, adjective
uncoarsely, adverb
uncoarseness, noun
Can be confused
coarse, course, curse, cuss.
2, 4. crude, rude, rough. 4. vulgar, gross, crass. 6. indelicate.
4. refined, sensitive. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for coarser
  • When two digits tick by at once the thrill expands further as the grain gets coarser.
  • Impoverished herders, desperate to boost their income, cross-bred their goats with coarser-haired angora ones.
  • Furthermore, there is going to be a reversal to coarser financial instruments.
  • The important thing with leeks is to distinguish their two parts-the white section at the base and the coarser green tops.
  • Body and facial hair are also lost, but the hairs that remain may become coarser.
  • The group debated mandating coarser sandpaper to be used along the sleds' runners but ultimately chose to use the normal grade.
  • Where such a custom was observed openly, one can be sure manners could be even coarser on the quiet.
  • He is a glutton at heart, but considerations of health keep him from coarser food than plovers' wings.
  • The edges of the lower mandible are serrated with teeth much more prominent, coarser, and sharper than in the duck.
  • Sprinkle coarser herbs or sea salt over the chocolate with your fingers.
British Dictionary definitions for coarser


rough in texture, structure, etc; not fine: coarse sand
lacking refinement or taste; indelicate; vulgar: coarse jokes
of inferior quality; not pure or choice
(of a metal) not refined
(of a screw) having widely spaced threads
Derived Forms
coarsely, adverb
coarseness, noun
Word Origin
C14: of unknown origin
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 coarser



early 15c., cors "ordinary" (modern spelling is from late 16c.), probably adjectival use of noun cours (see course (n.)), originally referring to rough cloth for ordinary wear. Developed a sense of "rude" c.1500 and "obscene" by 1711. Perhaps related, via metathesis, to French gros, which had a similar sense development. Related: Coarsely; coarseness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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