Deserving of contempt or disrespect due to a lack of courage or morals.


US English

UK English

Part of Speech



Cowardly, spineless, weak, base, ignoble


Brave, fearless, valiant, heroic, noble

Word Forms

Part of Speech Words
Noun craven, cravens, cravennesses, cravenness
Verb None
Adjective craven
Adverb None

Example Sentences

  • In the face of danger, he displayed a craven demeanor, trembling and fleeing rather than standing his ground.

  • The craven decision of the company’s leadership to prioritize profit over employee safety led to a tragic accident.

  • She was disappointed to discover that her supposed allies turned out to be craven and unwilling to support her cause.

  • The politician’s craven attitude towards the issues facing the country made many voters lose respect for him.


The word “craven” has a rich history and is used to describe individuals who display extreme cowardice or a complete lack of courage in the face of danger. Its origin can be traced back to the Old English term “cravant,” which meant “coward.” “Craven” is an adjective that carries a strong negative connotation, implying weakness, timidity, or a failure to act in moments of adversity.

The usage of “craven” often pertains to people who exhibit a complete absence of bravery or a persistent unwillingness to confront challenges or risks. It suggests a marked lack of fortitude, resilience, or determination. “Craven” can describe actions, behaviors, or attitudes that are characterized by a fear-driven avoidance of confrontation or difficulty.

Variations of the word “craven” include the noun form “cravenness,” which denotes the state or quality of being craven, and the adverb form “cravenly,” describing actions or behaviors that are characteristic of cravenness.

Understanding the history and usage of “craven” highlights the importance of courage, bravery, and resilience in the face of adversity. It serves as a reminder to stand up for what is right, face challenges head-on, and not succumb to fear or inaction.