Top 30 Slang For Cruelty – Meaning & Usage

Cruelty is unfortunately a prevalent issue in society today, and the language surrounding it can be just as harsh. From subtle digs to outright malicious behavior, navigating the slang for cruelty can be eye-opening. Our team has delved into this dark realm to bring you a list of the most common and impactful slang for cruelty used today. Stay informed and aware as we shed light on this important topic.

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1. Ruthless

This term describes someone or something that shows no compassion or remorse, especially when causing harm or suffering to others.

  • For example, “The ruthless dictator ruled with an iron fist, suppressing any opposition.”
  • In a discussion about competitive sports, someone might say, “The team played a ruthless game, leaving their opponents no chance.”
  • A person describing a harsh business decision might say, “The CEO made a ruthless move, laying off hundreds of employees.”

2. Heartless

This word refers to someone who is cold and indifferent, showing no concern for the feelings or well-being of others. It often implies a lack of empathy or sympathy.

  • For instance, “The heartless thief stole from the elderly woman without any remorse.”
  • In a discussion about a cruel act, someone might say, “It was a heartless act of vandalism.”
  • A person describing a selfish individual might say, “He’s completely heartless, only caring about his own needs.”

3. Sadistic

This term describes someone who takes pleasure in inflicting pain, suffering, or humiliation on others. It often implies a cruel and twisted enjoyment of causing harm.

  • For example, “The sadistic serial killer tortured his victims before ending their lives.”
  • In a discussion about a cruel prank, someone might say, “That was a sadistic joke, causing unnecessary harm.”
  • A person describing a violent movie scene might say, “The film depicted a sadistic character who enjoyed inflicting pain on others.”

4. Brutal

This word describes something that is harsh, savage, or extremely cruel. It often refers to acts or situations that involve violence or severe physical or emotional harm.

  • For instance, “The brutal attack left the victim with life-threatening injuries.”
  • In a discussion about war, someone might say, “The soldiers faced brutal conditions on the battlefield.”
  • A person describing a harsh punishment might say, “The judge handed down a brutal sentence, showing no mercy.”

5. Inhumane

This term refers to actions or behavior that is lacking in compassion, kindness, or consideration for others. It often implies a disregard for basic human rights or dignity.

  • For example, “The inhumane treatment of prisoners in the facility sparked outrage.”
  • In a discussion about animal cruelty, someone might say, “Using animals for entertainment is inhumane.”
  • A person describing a cruel dictator might say, “His regime was known for its inhumane practices and human rights abuses.”

6. Vicious

This term is used to describe someone or something that is extremely cruel or violent. It implies a lack of mercy or compassion.

  • For example, “He unleashed a vicious attack on his opponent.”
  • In a discussion about a brutal crime, someone might say, “The details of the murder were truly vicious.”
  • A person describing a vicious dog might warn, “Don’t approach that dog, it’s known to be vicious.”

7. Merciless

This word describes someone who shows no pity or compassion, and is willing to cause harm or suffering without hesitation.

  • For instance, “The dictator ruled with a merciless iron fist.”
  • In a conversation about a cutthroat businessperson, someone might say, “She is known for her merciless tactics.”
  • A person describing a relentless storm might comment, “The wind and rain were merciless, causing widespread destruction.”

8. Harsh

This term refers to something that is extremely strict, cruel, or unkind. It suggests a lack of empathy or understanding.

  • For example, “His harsh criticism left her feeling devastated.”
  • In a discussion about discipline, someone might say, “Sometimes, harsh punishment is necessary to teach a lesson.”
  • A person describing a harsh winter might comment, “The cold temperatures and heavy snowfall made for a harsh season.”

9. Cold-blooded

This phrase is used to describe someone who is cruel, lacking in empathy or compassion. It suggests a lack of emotional warmth or humanity.

  • For instance, “The murderer showed a cold-blooded disregard for human life.”
  • In a conversation about a heartless act, someone might say, “It was a cold-blooded betrayal.”
  • A person describing a heartless boss might comment, “He’s known for his cold-blooded management style.”

10. Malevolent

This word describes someone who has a strong desire to cause harm or suffering to others. It implies a deliberate intent to be cruel or evil.

  • For example, “The malevolent witch cast a curse on the village.”
  • In a discussion about a manipulative person, someone might say, “He has a malevolent nature, always scheming to hurt others.”
  • A person describing a malicious rumor might comment, “Spreading false information about someone is a malevolent act.”

11. Callous

Callous refers to someone who is emotionally hardened and lacks compassion or empathy. It is often used to describe someone who is indifferent to the suffering or feelings of others.

  • For example, “He showed a callous disregard for the homeless man’s plight.”
  • In a discussion about bullying, someone might say, “The bully’s callous behavior towards his classmates is unacceptable.”
  • A news article might describe a criminal as “a callous murderer who showed no remorse for his actions.”
See also  Top 52 Slang For Demeaning – Meaning & Usage

12. Unfeeling

Unfeeling describes someone who lacks emotion or compassion. It is often used to describe someone who is indifferent to the suffering of others and does not show empathy.

  • For instance, “She spoke in an unfeeling manner, completely unaffected by the tragedy.”
  • In a discussion about a heartless boss, someone might say, “He’s so unfeeling, he doesn’t care about the well-being of his employees.”
  • A character in a novel might be described as “an unfeeling antagonist who takes pleasure in others’ pain.”

13. Barbaric

Barbaric refers to something that is uncivilized, cruel, or brutal. It is often used to describe actions or behaviors that are considered inhumane or lacking in moral standards.

  • For example, “The barbaric practice of public executions has long been abolished.”
  • In a discussion about animal cruelty, someone might say, “Using animals for entertainment is barbaric.”
  • A news article might describe a war crime as “a barbaric act of violence that shocked the world.”

14. Oppressive

Oppressive describes something that is unjustly harsh or burdensome, often exerting control or power over others. It is often used to describe systems, governments, or individuals that restrict freedom and suppress the rights of others.

  • For instance, “The oppressive regime silenced any dissenting voices.”
  • In a discussion about workplace conditions, someone might say, “The oppressive policies of the company are causing employees to suffer.”
  • A political activist might describe a dictator as “an oppressive ruler who tramples on the rights of the people.”

15. Draconian

Draconian refers to laws, rules, or measures that are excessively strict or severe. It is often used to describe policies that are perceived as unfair or oppressive.

  • For example, “The draconian sentencing laws resulted in disproportionately long prison terms.”
  • In a discussion about government regulations, someone might say, “The new tax policy is draconian and will burden small businesses.”
  • A news article might describe a zero-tolerance policy as “a draconian approach that leaves no room for discretion or leniency.”

16. Nefarious

Nefarious is an adjective used to describe someone or something that is extremely wicked or villainous. It implies a sense of evil or malicious intent.

  • For example, “The nefarious villain plotted to take over the world.”
  • In a discussion about crime, someone might say, “The suspect has a long history of nefarious activities.”
  • A person describing a deceitful action might say, “He had a nefarious plan to trick his business partner.”

17. Malefic

Malefic is an adjective that describes something or someone that causes harm or evil. It is often used to describe actions, intentions, or influences that have negative consequences.

  • For instance, “The malefic spell cast a dark shadow over the village.”
  • In a conversation about toxic relationships, someone might say, “She was trapped in a malefic marriage.”
  • A person discussing the effects of pollution might say, “The malefic effects of industrial waste are devastating to the environment.”

18. Cruel-hearted

Cruel-hearted is an adjective used to describe someone who lacks compassion or empathy, and takes pleasure in causing pain or suffering to others.

  • For example, “The cruel-hearted bully tormented his classmates.”
  • In a discussion about animal abuse, someone might say, “Only a cruel-hearted person would intentionally harm an innocent animal.”
  • A person describing a character in a book might say, “The antagonist was portrayed as a cruel-hearted villain.”

19. Savage

Savage is an adjective used to describe someone or something that is fierce, violent, and lacking in mercy or compassion. It implies a sense of brutality or savagery.

  • For instance, “The savage warrior struck fear into the hearts of his enemies.”
  • In a conversation about a gruesome crime, someone might say, “The murder was carried out in a savage manner.”
  • A person describing a wild animal might say, “The lion’s roar echoed through the savanna, showcasing its savage power.”

20. Ferocious

Ferocious is an adjective used to describe someone or something that is extremely aggressive, violent, or intense. It implies a sense of untamed or unrestrained behavior.

  • For example, “The ferocious storm caused widespread destruction.”
  • In a discussion about sports, someone might say, “The team’s ferocious defense dominated the game.”
  • A person describing a heated argument might say, “They engaged in a ferocious debate, each passionately defending their viewpoint.”

21. Monstrous

This term is used to describe something that is extremely cruel or evil. It emphasizes the magnitude and severity of the cruelty.

  • For example, “The villain’s actions were truly monstrous, causing immense suffering.”
  • In a discussion about a heinous crime, someone might say, “The level of cruelty displayed was absolutely monstrous.”
  • A person describing an abusive relationship might say, “He treated her in a monstrous way, causing both physical and emotional harm.”

22. Severe

This term refers to cruelty that is intense or extreme in nature. It implies a level of seriousness and impact.

  • For instance, “She faced severe cruelty at the hands of her abuser.”
  • In a conversation about punishment, someone might say, “The criminal deserves a severe sentence for their actions.”
  • A person describing a difficult situation might say, “The cruelty of the circumstances was severe, leaving lasting scars.”

23. Unkind

This term describes cruelty that is lacking in kindness or compassion. It suggests a deliberate intention to hurt or harm.

  • For example, “He made unkind remarks that deeply hurt her feelings.”
  • In a discussion about bullying, someone might say, “The unkind actions of the bully left lasting emotional scars.”
  • A person describing a hurtful comment might say, “That was an unkind thing to say, especially considering the circumstances.”

24. Nasty

This term is used to describe cruelty that is spiteful, mean, or intended to cause harm. It often implies a certain level of enjoyment or satisfaction in causing pain.

  • For instance, “She spread nasty rumors about her former friend, causing significant emotional distress.”
  • In a conversation about revenge, someone might say, “He planned a nasty prank to get back at his ex.”
  • A person describing a hurtful action might say, “That was a really nasty thing to do, and it shows a lack of empathy.”

25. Mercenary

This term refers to cruelty that is driven by self-interest or a lack of empathy. It implies a disregard for the well-being of others and a willingness to do whatever it takes to achieve personal gain.

  • For example, “He showed a mercenary attitude, caring only about his own success.”
  • In a discussion about a heartless act, someone might say, “The mercenary actions of the criminal showed a complete lack of compassion.”
  • A person describing a ruthless business decision might say, “The company’s decision to lay off employees was purely mercenary, prioritizing profit over people.”

26. Tyrannical

This term describes someone or something that exercises power and control in a cruel and oppressive manner. It often refers to a ruler or leader who governs with absolute authority and shows no regard for the rights or well-being of others.

  • For example, a person might say, “The tyrannical dictator ruled the country with an iron fist.”
  • In a discussion about abusive relationships, someone might mention, “She finally left her tyrannical partner and found freedom.”
  • A political commentator might criticize a leader by saying, “His tyrannical policies are causing immense suffering for the population.”

27. Despotic

This term describes someone or something that exercises absolute power and control over others, often in a cruel and oppressive manner. It is similar to “tyrannical” and is often used to describe rulers or leaders who abuse their authority.

  • For instance, a person might say, “The despotic king ruled with fear and intimidation.”
  • In a discussion about oppressive governments, someone might argue, “Despotic regimes suppress freedom of speech and violate human rights.”
  • A historian might describe a past ruler by saying, “The despotic emperor’s reign was marked by widespread suffering and unrest.”

28. Malignant

This term describes someone or something that is intentionally harmful, cruel, or evil. It often refers to individuals who derive pleasure from causing suffering or inflicting pain on others.

  • For example, a person might say, “He has a malignant personality and enjoys hurting others.”
  • In a discussion about online trolls, someone might comment, “Their malignant behavior is a reflection of their own unhappiness.”
  • A psychologist might describe a patient’s actions by saying, “His malignant tendencies indicate a deep-seated need for power and control.”

29. Malicious

This term describes someone or something that has the intention to harm or cause pain to others. It often refers to individuals who act with deliberate cruelty or spitefulness.

  • For instance, a person might say, “She spread malicious rumors about her co-worker to damage their reputation.”
  • In a discussion about cyberbullying, someone might mention, “The malicious comments left on her social media posts were deeply hurtful.”
  • A lawyer might argue in court, “The defendant’s malicious intent is evident in their actions and statements.”

30. Sadomasochistic

This term refers to the enjoyment of both inflicting and receiving pain or humiliation, often in a sexual context. It describes individuals who engage in consensual acts of dominance, submission, and role-playing that involve elements of cruelty and control.

  • For example, a person might say, “Their relationship is based on a sadomasochistic dynamic.”
  • In a discussion about alternative sexual practices, someone might mention, “Sadomasochistic activities require clear communication and consent.”
  • A psychologist might explain, “Some individuals find pleasure and catharsis in sadomasochistic experiences, as it allows them to explore power dynamics and push personal boundaries.”