reckless, rash and impetuous

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Senior Member

Can you tell me the differences between reckless, rash and impetuous?

rash decision
reckless driving
Fury made her reckless.
impetuous decisions
her impetuous tongue

In my opinion, rash and reckless, someone being subjectively disregardful of consequences, while impetuous, someone being objectively regardless of consequences, but not subjectively.
  • Sharkbasket

    English - Canada
    I feel that rash and reckless are synonyms of each other. They both mean "done without thinking about what will happen as a result."

    Impetuous is very similar, but I feel like it has a slightly different meaning. I would use impetuous when I want to emphasize that the actions are based on passion or emotion (rather than logical thought).
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    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    All three of those terms are adequately defined in the WR Dictionary and I think the definitions capture their nuances very well, so I can't quite understand why you are asking, sl.

    Please give us a complete sentence where you wish to use one of them but are not sure which to use. Don't forget that the dictionary is also useful for finding words or phrases in context.

    Here is a page of search results for "reckless". (If it is not accessible from your country, I apologise.)
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