Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English


English definition of “severity”


noun [U] (NOT KIND)    /sɪˈver.ɪ.ti/ US  /-ə.t̬i/
the quality of being very unkind or unpleasant : He spoke with great severity. The severity of the punishment should match the seriousness of the crime .SevereSerious and severeSevere
(Definition of severity noun (NOT KIND) from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of severity

Definitions of “severity” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day


the skill or activity of preparing and cooking food

Word of the Day


Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More