Adjective "Superficial" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


Existing or occurring at or on the surface.
  1. 'For every study finding that they are safe, there is one suggesting that they might indeed cause some damage, superficial or otherwise.'
  2. 'The damage was superficial and the problem fixed.'
  3. 'Yet from Dione's point of view, their realism and design are superficial features.'
  4. 'Criticism must see beyond superficial décor to spiritual purpose and order.'
  5. 'Golding's challenge to any definite sense of comprehension through superficial perception is inextricably entwined with his writing's own visual aspects.'
  6. 'the superficial muscle groups'
  7. 'A spokesman confirmed he was detained overnight with superficial injuries.'
  8. 'They were treated for smoke inhalation and superficial burns.'
Appearing to be true or real only until examined more closely.
  1. 'That is, they sound good on a superficial level, but a look at the fine print shows a different picture.'
  2. 'He did not make the mistake of judging Catalans not only by their difference from other Spaniards but by superficial resemblances to French ways and style.'
  3. 'On a purely superficial level, this album mirrors its predecessor so closely I ought to really give them identical grades.'
  4. 'A superficial comparison of Roth with Malamud reveals two versions of the problems of self-definition which is at the core of this literature.'
  5. 'Correspondingly, each claimed that the other remained entangled in, and misled by, a superficial, merely apparent reality.'
  6. 'Whilst these conclusions may have a superficial validity they say nothing of the dynamics and processes of change and the social content underlying the institutional restructuring explored by the authors.'
  7. 'It only affirms the hugely popular, superficial notion of a culture in crisis, of a culture lost in a constant loop of revivals.'
  8. 'That said there does appear to be some superficial evidence that suggests the period from May to September is a dull period for shares.'
  9. 'The weakness of many of these fads is that they have the superficial appearance that something profound is happening, yet the substance is not there.'
  10. 'Sensibly, I think, he acknowledges that comics and movies are two wildly different media, despite superficial resemblances.'
  11. 'Despite superficial resemblances to their medieval predecessors, these Lutheran altarpieces share a number of striking new features.'
Not thorough, deep, or complete; cursory.
  1. 'The rest is superficial, a blight of the modern obsession with looks and image.'
  2. 'The general impression was of a scrappy and superficial campaign, facing a coherent and single-minded Government.'
  3. 'Critics with a superficial understanding of the principle imagine that it would force all land into use and lead to overdevelopment.'
  4. 'A 14-minute featurette entitled ‘A Talent for Life: Iris’ gives a fairly superficial look at the making of the film.'
  5. 'Perhaps the biggest disappointment is his extremely superficial treatment of the historical experience of the now developed countries.'
  6. 'He gives a superficial and inadequate account of Kipling's curious, subtle, savage, contradictory passion for England, which was both his home and his place of exile.'
  7. 'Dialogue is sparse, so the humour is superficial, not character-driven, and shows up as glib one-liners.'
  8. 'The insights are superficial too, but it is a light comedy after all.'
  9. 'It was written from kind of a superficial, Hollywood point of view, essentially filled, I think, with a lot of lies by omission.'
  10. 'But this is pretty lame stuff - dated, superficial, unfocused and only intermittently engrossing.'
  11. 'The characters themselves are little more than superficial sketches that become increasingly indistinguishable as the movie proceeds.'
  12. 'Anyone with even the most superficial aquaintence with the history of the French revolution will know what that means, in nine cases out of ten.'
  13. 'Like all single career women, Bridget is a slobbering alcoholic, a superficial ninny posing as a competent professional and intellectual.'
  14. 'Surely the female species is not so superficial?'
  15. 'The script lacks any such subtleties and none of the cast is skillful enough to be able to suggest any depth beyond the script's superficial characterizations.'
  16. 'However, the better you know Doucet's sources, the more you realize how superficial his version is.'
  17. 'What conversation exists is trapped in a level of superficial banality.'
  18. 'Mullings' portrayal of the duplicitous wife is forced and superficial.'
  19. 'Actually I think it makes the characters seem whiney and irritating and erm… superficial.'
  20. 'The mother, of course, is ditzy, frazzled and superficial because there can be no real happiness beyond the city limits.'
  21. 'And the characters are so superficial that we hardly care which of these different fates may befall them.'
  22. 'It is the vision of an Englishman, a sportsman and a visitor yet not that of a superficial tourist, and, irritating as it might be to the Scottish nationalist in the age of devolution, it still exerts a powerful appeal.'
  23. 'Bitty Schram is suitably superficial and irritating as Hallie.'
Denoting a quantity of a material expressed in terms of area covered rather than linear dimension or volume.


    1. being at, on, or near the surface: a superficial wound.

    2. of or relating to the surface: superficial measurement.

    3. external or outward: a superficial resemblance.

    4. concerned with or comprehending only what is on the surface or obvious: a superficial observer.

    5. shallow; not profound or thorough: a superficial writer.

    6. apparent rather than real.

    7. insubstantial or insignificant: superficial improvements.

    More examples(as adjective)

    "scripts can be superficial at times."

    "levels can be superficial."

    "resemblances can be superficial."

    "wounds can be superficial."

    "ways can be superficial."

    More examples++


    Late Middle English: from late Latin superficialis, from Latin superficies (see superficies).