Definitions for obscureəbˈskyʊər
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
(adj.)(of meaning) not clear or plain; ambiguous, vague, or uncertain.
not clear to the understanding; hard to perceive:
(of language, style, a speaker, etc.) not expressing the meaning clearly or plainly.
not readily seen, heard, etc.; indistinct; faint.
Category: Common Vocabulary
inconspicuous or unnoticeable:
the obscure beginnings of a movement.
of little or no prominence or distinction; unknown:
an obscure artist.
far from public notice or activity; remote:
an obscure little town.
lacking in light or illumination; dark; dim; murky.
enveloped in or concealed by darkness.
(of a vowel) having the reduced or neutral sound usu. represented by the schwa (ə).
(v.t.)to conceal or confuse (meaning, intention, or the like); cover; mask.
Category: Common Vocabulary
to make dark, dim, indistinct, etc.
to reduce or neutralize (a vowel) to the sound usu. represented by a schwa (ə).
* Syn: See mysterious.
Origin of obscure:
1400–50; late ME < OF oscur, obscur < L obscūrus dark
not clearly understood or expressed
"an obscure turn of phrase"; "an impulse to go off and fight certain obscure battles of his own spirit"-Anatole Broyard; "their descriptions of human behavior become vague, dull, and unclear"- P.A.Sorokin; "vague...forms of speech...have so long passed for mysteries of science"- John Locke
marked by difficulty of style or expression
"much that was dark is now quite clear to me"; "those who do not appreciate Kafka's work say his style is obscure"
difficult to find
"hidden valleys"; "a hidden cave"; "an obscure retreat"
obscure, unknown, unsung(adj)
not famous or acclaimed
"an obscure family"; "unsung heroes of the war"
not drawing attention
"an unnoticeable cigarette burn on the carpet"; "an obscure flaw"
apart(p), isolated, obscure(verb)
remote and separate physically or socially
"existed over the centuries as a world apart"; "preserved because they inhabited a place apart"- W.H.Hudson; "tiny isolated villages remote from centers of civilization"; "an obscure village"
obscure, befog, becloud, obnubilate, haze over, fog, cloud, mist(verb)
make less visible or unclear
"The stars are obscured by the clouds"; "the big elm tree obscures our view of the valley"
confuse, blur, obscure, obnubilate(verb)
make unclear, indistinct, or blurred
"Her remarks confused the debate"; "Their words obnubilate their intentions"
obscure, bedim, overcloud(verb)
make obscure or unclear
"The distinction was obscured"
reduce a vowel to a neutral one, such as a schwa
obscure, blot out, obliterate, veil, hide(verb)
make undecipherable or imperceptible by obscuring or concealing
"a hidden message"; "a veiled threat"
Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary
almost completely unknown
an obscure 19th century poet
very difficult to understand
an obscure piece of writing
to make difficult to see
A pillar obscured his view of the stage.
To darken, make faint etc.
To hide, put out of sight etc.
Dark, faint or indistinct.
Hidden, out of sight or inconspicuous.
Difficult to understand.
Origin: From obscur, from obscurus, possibly, from ob + , from root scu, seen also in scutum; see scutum, sky.
covered over, shaded, or darkened; destitute of light; imperfectly illuminated; dusky; dim
of or pertaining to darkness or night; inconspicuous to the sight; indistinctly seen; hidden; retired; remote from observation; unnoticed
not noticeable; humble; mean
not easily understood; not clear or legible; abstruse or blind; as, an obscure passage or inscription
not clear, full, or distinct; clouded; imperfect; as, an obscure view of remote objects
to render obscure; to darken; to make dim; to keep in the dark; to hide; to make less visible, intelligible, legible, glorious, beautiful, or illustrious
to conceal one's self; to hide; to keep dark
The New Hacker's Dictionary
Used in an exaggeration of its normal meaning, to imply total incomprehensibility. “The reason for that last crash is obscure.” “The find(1) command's syntax is obscure!” The phrase moderately obscure implies that something could be figured out but probably isn't worth the trouble. The construction obscure in the extreme is the preferred emphatic form.
Translations for obscure
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary
not clear; difficult to see
an obscure corner of the library.
- duister, donkerAfrikaans
- obscuroPortuguese (BR)
- σκοτεινός, δυσδιάκριτοςGreek
- obscuro, oscuro, poco claroSpanish
- تیره و تارFarsi
- 잘 보이지 않는Korean
- sunkiai pastebimas/įžiūrimas, tamsusLithuanian
- tumšs; vāji apgaismotsLatvian
- sukar difahamiMalay
- uklar, utydeligNorwegian
- mroczny, niewidocznyPolish
- تیره و تارPersian
- نا څرګندهPashto
- obscur, întunecosRomanian
- неясный, скрытный; тёмныйRussian
- dunkel, skumSwedish
- 暗的，朦朧的Chinese (Trad.)
- похмурий, темнийUkrainian
- دھندلا، غير واضحUrdu
- tối; mờ mịtVietnamese
- 暗的，朦胧的Chinese (Simp.)
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