Idiot vs Nincompoop - What's the difference?

idiot | nincompoop |

As nouns the difference between idiot and nincompoop

is that idiot is (slang|derogatory) a proponent of intelligent design while nincompoop is a silly or foolish person.



Alternative forms

* eejit * idjit, idget (eye dialect)


(en noun)
  • (pejorative) A person of low general intelligence.
  • usage note This may be used pejoratively, as an insult. It is a weak insult, however, and between close friends, family members, or lovers, is often completely nonaggressive.
  • (obsolete, medicine, psychology) A person who lacks the capacity to develop beyond the mental age of a normal four-year-old.
  • Synonyms

    * See also


    * genius




    (en noun)
  • A silly or foolish person.
  • * {{quote-book
  • , year=1680 , author=Matthew Stevenson , title=The wits paraphras'd: or, Paraphrase upon paraphrase: In a burlesque on the several late translations of Ovids Epistles ... citation , page=161 , passage=Tis such another Nincompoop ,
    I sleep, and he begins to droop.
    He sees, yet keeps his Eyes a winking,
    Says nought, but pays it off with thinking. }}
  • * {{quote-book
  • , year=1694 , author=Thomas D'Urfey , title=The Comical History of Don Quixote: As it was Acted at the Queen's Theatre in Dorset-Garden ... , chapter=Part I, Act I, Scene I citation , page=6 , passage=...Heaven knows the time when? Art not thou asham’d to see me, thou Nincompoop ? }}
  • * 1905: Baroness Emmuska Orczy, The Scarlet Pimpernel [,+Baroness:+The+Scarlet+Pimpernel,+1905&query=+nincompoop&id=OrcPimp]
  • No wonder that Chauvelin's spies had failed to detect, in the apparently brainless nincompoop , the man whose reckless daring and resourceful ingenuity had baffled the keenest French spies...

    Derived terms

    * nincompoopery


    * (foolish person) dunderhead, fop, fool, imbecile, fuckwit * See also