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Related to indolence: Sophisms


Habitual laziness; sloth.



(See also IDLENESS.)

bed of roses A situation or state of ease, comfort, or pleasure; the lap of luxury. This phrase and its variants bed of down or flowers were used as early as the first half of the 17th century by Shakespeare and Herrick, among others. The rose is a symbol of perfection and completeness, giving it more weight than down or flowers, which may account for why bed of roses is the preferred form today. The expression is often used in the negative, as no bed of roses, to emphasize the disparity between what is and what could be.

dolce far niente Delightful idleness, carefree indolence; relaxation, peace-fulness, tranquillity. Attesting to the great appeal of such a lifestyle is the fact that equivalent phrases have appeared in different languages dating back to the Roman writer Pliny. English use of the Italian dolce far niente ‘sweet doing nothing’ dates from at least the turn of the 19th century.

It is there … that the dolce far niente of a summer evening is most heavenly. (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Life, 1830)

live in cotton wool See INEXPERIENCE.

lotus-eater An idle dreamer, one who lives a life of indolence and ease. The lotus-eaters or lotophagi are a mythical people found in Homer’s Odyssey. Odysseus discovers them in a state of dreamy forgetfulness and contentment induced by their consumption of the legendary lotus fruit. Having lost all desire to return to their homelands, they want only to remain in Lotus-land living a life of idle luxury. Use of the term dates from the first half of the 19th century.

A summer like that of 1893 may be all very well for the lotus-eater, but is a calamity to people who have to get their living out of English land. (The Times, December, 1893)

woolgathering Daydreaming, idle imagining or fantasizing; absent-mindedness, preoccupation, abstraction; often to go woolgathering.

Ha’ you summoned your wits from wool-gathering? (Thomas Middle-ton, The Family of Love, 1607)

Although the practice of woolgathering (wandering about the countryside collecting tufts of sheep’s wool caught on bushes) is virtually obsolete, the figurative term is still current.

ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.indolence - inactivity resulting from a dislike of workindolence - inactivity resulting from a dislike of work
inertia, inactiveness, inactivity - a disposition to remain inactive or inert; "he had to overcome his inertia and get back to work"
faineance, idleness - the trait of being idle out of a reluctance to work
shiftlessness - a failure to be active as a consequence of lack of initiative or ambition


noun idleness, slacking, laziness, inertia, shirking, lethargy, inactivity, sloth, torpor, skiving (Brit. slang), languor, inertness, torpidity, faineance, faineancy, languidness He was noted for his indolence.
"I look upon indolence as a sort of suicide" [Lord Chesterfield]


The quality or state of being lazy:
Informal: do-nothingism.


[ˈɪndələns] Nindolencia f


[ˈɪndələns] nindolence f


nTrägheit f, → Indolenz f (rare)


[ˈɪndələns] nindolenza
References in classic literature ?
We rode slowly, with a pleasant sense of Sunday indolence.
We continued not in a state of indolence, but hunted every day, and prepared a little cottage to defend us from the Winter storms.
Elinor honoured her for a plan which originated so nobly as this; though smiling to see the same eager fancy which had been leading her to the extreme of languid indolence and selfish repining, now at work in introducing excess into a scheme of such rational employment and virtuous self-control.
Eliza generally took no more notice of her sister's indolence and complaints than if no such murmuring, lounging object had been before her.
This fidgety anxiety about his keys and his cupboards might be the result of the inbred restlessness of his disposition, aggravated in a naturally active man by the aimless indolence of a life in retirement -- a life drifting backward and forward among trifles, with no regular employment to steady it at any given hour of the day.
She had set out at an early hour, but had lingered on the road, inclined by her indolence to believe that if she waited under a warm shed the snow would cease to fall.
It seemed then to be your opinion, that the charm lay entirely in the art with which the unknown author had availed himself, like a second M`Pherson, of the antiquarian stores which lay scattered around him, supplying his own indolence or poverty of invention, by the incidents which had actually taken place in his country at no distant period, by introducing real characters, and scarcely suppressing real names.
His father had been our ambassador at Madrid when Isabella was young and Prim unthought of, but had retired from the diplomatic service in a capricious moment of annoyance on not being offered the Embassy at Paris, a post to which he considered that he was fully entitled by reason of his birth, his indolence, the good English of his dispatches, and his inordinate passion for pleasure.
No victory, No joy of triumph doth the faint heart know; Unblest is he That a bold front to Fortune dares not show, But soul and sense In bondage yieldeth up to indolence.
The bourgeoisie has disclosed how it came to pass that the brutal display of vigour in the Middle Ages, which Reactionists so much admire, found its fitting complement in the most slothful indolence.
he called me by this name when he was in good humor); `do you think I am going to change the life I lead for your mode of existence -- my agreeable indolence for the hard and precarious toil you impose on yourself, exposed to the bitter frost at night, and the scorching heat by day, compelled to conceal yourself, and when you are perceived, receive a volley of bullets, all to earn a paltry sum?
Lydia has no brothers to step forward; and he might imagine, from my father's behaviour, from his indolence and the little attention he has ever seemed to give to what was going forward in his family, that HE would do as little, and think as little about it, as any father could do, in such a matter.