1. Lonely; solitary; desolate.

2. Gloomy; dismal; foreboding. "Solemn hymns so sullen dirges change." (Shak)

3. Mischievous; malignant; unpropitious. "Such sullen planets at my birth did shine." (Dryden)

4. Gloomily angry and silent; cross; sour; affected with ill humor; morose. "And sullen I forsook the imperfect feast." (Prior)

5. Obstinate; intractable. "Things are as sullen as we are." (Tillotson)

6. Heavy; dull; sluggish. "The larger stream was placid, and even sullen, in its course."

Synonyms: Sulky, sour, cross, ill-natured, morose, peevish, fretful, ill-humored, petulant, gloomy, malign, intractable.

Sullen, Sulky. Both sullen and sulky show themselves in the demeanor. Sullenness seems to be an habitual sulkiness, and sulkiness a temporary sullenness. The former may be an innate disposition; the latter, a disposition occasioned by recent injury. Thus we are in a sullen mood, and in a sulky fit. "No cheerful breeze this sullen region knows; The dreaded east is all the wind that blows." (Pope)

Origin: OE. Solein, solain, lonely, sullen; through Old French fr. (assumed) LL. Solanus solitary, fr. L. Solus alone.

(04 Mar 1998)