9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[non-shuh-lahnt, non-shuh-lahnt, -luh nt] /ˌnɒn ʃəˈlɑnt, ˈnɒn ʃəˌlɑnt, -lənt/
coolly unconcerned, indifferent, or unexcited; casual:
His nonchalant manner infuriated me.
Origin of nonchalant
1725-35; < French nonchalant, present participle of obsolete nonchaloir to lack warmth (of heart), be indifferent, equivalent to non- non- + chaloir < Latin calēre to be warm. See -ant
Related forms
nonchalantly, adverb
cool, calm, collected, composed.
excitable. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for nonchalant
  • Buddy's agreement was magnificently nonchalant.
  • Most of them were pretty nonchalant and haven't spoken to me about it much.
  • Pete tries to be nonchalant.
  • They are nonchalant about their famous customers.
  • Mary is a typical adolescent, masking her insecurities with a nonchalant air.
  • Just be nonchalant, but take good mental notes while you're there.
  • When they see me come in calm and nonchalant, it gives them a sense of security because they know the problem's going to go away.
  • That was the closest I've seen a messageboard posting come to being nonchalant.
  • Equally attractive was his nonchalant, ever-hopeful attitude to life.
  • Tattooed young hipsters rush by, handling their battered bikes with nonchalant ease.
British Dictionary definitions for nonchalant


casually unconcerned or indifferent; uninvolved
Derived Forms
nonchalance, noun
nonchalantly, adverb
Word Origin
C18: from French, from nonchaloir to lack warmth, from non- + chaloir, from Latin calēre to be warm
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 nonchalant

1734, from French nonchalant, present participle of nonchaloir "be indifferent to, have no concern for" (13c.), from non- "not" (see non-) + chaloir "have concern for," ultimately from Latin calere "be hot" (see calorie). French chaland "customer, client" is of the same origin. Related: Nonchalantly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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