I come across words 'insouciant' and 'blithe' in article two days ago.I don't remember what it's called. I look words up on Dictionary.com which gives the following.

"1) Insouciant: free from concern, worry, or anxiety; carefree; nonchalant."

"2) blithe 1)without thought or regard; carefree; heedless:

a blithe indifference to anyone's feelings.

2)joyous, merry, or happy in disposition; glad; cheerful:

Everyone loved her for her blithe spirit."

Is there any difference in meanings between the words?

I get feeling both words have definition of 'careless or cheerful indifference that evokes signs of calmness and untroubledness'

2 Answers 2


Insouciant is a borrowed French word meaning 'carefree'.

Blithe is a rather old-fashioned word meaning 'happy, cheerful', but it is also used in expressions like 'He blithely ignored the danger', referring to people who show a careless indifference to something negative or unpleasant.


There's two differences worth knowing about.

One difference is that while "insouciant" only has the positive meaning of "carefree", "blithe" also has the very negative meaning of "ignorant" or "heedless".

The other is that "insouciant" sounds arrogant and superior. We use "blithe" way more often than "insouciant", especially in speaking, so if you're choosing from among "blithe/carefree/insouciant", you need a good reason to choose "insouciant".

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .