- 1[uncountable] cruelty (to somebody/something) behavior that causes pain or suffering to others, especially deliberately cruelty to animals The deliberate cruelty of his words cut her like a knife. opposite kindness
- 2[countable, usually plural] a cruel action Frightening cruelties were inflicted on child factory workers well into the 19th century.
- 3[countable, uncountable] something that happens that seems unfair the cruelties of life
NAmE//ˈkruəlti//, NAmE//ˈkrulti//(pl. cruelties)