What Do You Call Someone Who Never Laughs?

As humans, there are a lot of different ways we laugh – from giggles to guffaws. But some individuals are wired or tend not to laugh.

What name do you use to refer to someone who seems to never laugh even at the funniest scenarios?

To begin with, it may surprise you to know that not everyone can spontaneously laugh. Also, not everyone experiences a belly laugh.

For people who hardly express this physical response, what are they called? The answer depends on the situation and context.

People who hardly laugh are called Agelast. But, agelast is a common word that comes to the lips of many who are in the position of describing someone who barely laughs.

What Do You Call Someone Who Never Laughs

There are many other word choices you can consider to sound more sophisticated, flaunt your bowl of vocabulary, or drive home your point to be in tune with a particular line of thought.

Other words to describe someone who never laughs include Humourless,  Cachinnator, Humbug, Sullen, Cranky, Grumpy, Sober, or Stone-faced.

In addition to these, you can call someone who barely laughs a Straight-faced person. Mind you, all of these words would best apply in certain situations which the rest of this article will extensively buttress so that you know when best to use them.

9 Names To Call Someone Who Never Laughs (Explained)

Some of the popular words people use to describe someone who barely laughs share meaning with other insinuations which means they are not ideal for some specific context.

So, the word you want to use should be specific, easily understandable, and one that you can easily remember in a conversation.

Meanwhile, there is no gender-specific term among these words as they will both apply to both males and females who seem to barely laugh in any given situation.

What Do You Call Someone Who Never Laughs

1. Agelast

Agelast is a term to refer to someone who never laughs. If you want a word that will accurately and explicitly express your insinuation, then this is the word.

But it is commonly used. So people who are looking for a variety of word choices may not find this word ideal to use.

When you all call someone Agelast, it means the person under any circumstances will not laugh. The explanation of this term seems to tilt towards a psychological or biological cause whereby the person finds it hard to laugh due to biological composition.

The word is borrowed from Middle French agelaste which originated from Greek agelastos. It is correct to say someone is Agelastic.

2. Humorless

Another word you can use to refer to someone who barely laughs in any way is to call the person a Humourless person.

By using this word, you are insinuating that the person does not find anything funny. Someone who does not see any hilariousness in things is not expected to laugh in such regard.

Using Humourless applies best when the person, in addition to never laughing, always looks too serious and takes every joke in its literal meaning.

3. Humbug

Going by the dictionary definition, a humbug is someone who is deceptive or fakes a laugh. Although the element of physical reaction to funny things is present here, it is done in pretence.

If you know someone who, even when forced to laugh, would only do so in pretense, then you can use the word Humbug to describe the person. It is not widely used, so when you make use of this word, it sounds original and a little sophisticated.

Humbug is best used to describe someone who hardly laughs, but when forced or compelled to, he fakes it. Even when the situation is genuinely hilarious, the person would rather not react with a spontaneous belly laugh.

4. Sullen

You use sullen to describe someone who hardly laughs, especially when this happens because the person seems to be a bad-tempered or gloomy individual.

Some people are naturally down in the dumps. Their temperament can be interpreted as dark, dour, glum, moody, and morose. You don’t expect people with such a personality to laugh at any given situation.

So to describe people of this kind, the word Sullen is best used.

5. Cranky

You could also call someone who never laughs a cranky person. When you call them this, it sends the idea that they are ill-tempered and irritable. Hence, they hardly laugh no matter the situation or joke.

The word cranky is best used when you want to describe someone who is always frowning and yelling, and will not see the fun or hilariousness in anything.

The fault with using this word is that it shares meaning with other definitions. For example, cranky can also mean a machine that has refused to work well.

Nevertheless, it is an ideal word and flexible enough to be understood in the context you communicate in.

What Do You Call Someone Who Never Laughs

6. Grumpy

Generally, the word Grumpy is used to refer to someone who is bad-tempered and especially miserable. However, it also applies when looking for a name to call someone who never laughs because those in such a category can be interpreted to be bad-tempered.

It is best used when the person who seems to never laugh is old. It won’t sound best when you use Grumpy as a term to refer to a young individual who hardly laughs.

Grumpy also tilts to the insinuation that the person who hardly laughs is more or less stubborn and surly.

7. Sober

In addition, you can also call someone who never laughs a sober person. To be sober means to show a serious attitude or do things with a facial expression and countenance that give no room for light-headedness.

When you call someone sober because he or she never laughs, it is often additionally suggested that the person is a pessimist and always envisages the negative side of every joke or situation that is ordinarily designed to make others cheer or laugh.

8. Stone-faced

A stone face person is someone that has a face that shows no emotions. This applies to describing someone who never laughs. Laughing is an expression to reveal that something cracked you up.

But there are people, even when they find things funny, who doesn’t just spontaneously burst into laughter. This means they have a stone face.

Meanwhile, this also extends to other facial expressions. It is best used when the person in question, in addition to never laughing, does not reveal other emotions like being impressed, annoyed, satisfied, and so on.

9. Straight-faced

When you say someone is straight-faced, it means the person gives no evidence of emotion, especially one of merriment. Unlike being stone-faced, this term is particular about concealing the emotion of merriment or cheer.

So this is another option you can use, and it is best suitable when giving a speech or in any official setting.

If the person seems to never be amused by any funny situation, then you want to use this word to describe the person – straight-faced.

What Does It Mean If Someone Never Laughs?

When someone never laughs, one of the possible meanings behind that trait could be that the person has a particular self-consciousness. Some straight-faced people believe that when they can laugh and do that often, they are automatically letting their guard down.

Although some therapists will frown at this ideology it is psychologically correct, based on experience. The more you laugh, the more you are perceived as friendly and easy to invade.

What Do You Call Someone Who Never Laughs

The possible meanings behind someone hardly laughing span beyond self-security and ego. In some cases, it is a psychological issue that seems to be beyond the control of the person.

As mentioned earlier, some people are not just wired to easily express any emotion, not to mention the physical reaction when something is hilarious.

Meanwhile, there is a widespread misconception that laughter is great for one’s health. Sadly, this is not true. People naturally do not like to laugh out loud and understand that the former is a false claim, they see no reason to laugh.

Another meaning of when a person never laughs could be that the person believes that he or she will be easily taken seriously. Sometimes, people read our facial expressions before reading the words that we speak.

Those who seem to never laugh are perceived to be serious-minded, laser-focused, and strict, thereby commanding respect and fear.


Some people never laugh and it is easy for one to conclude that they are sad all the time and they never experience good news. But this is not always true.

There are many reasons why some people seem to never laugh or express any physical/facial reaction to show that they find something funny, even if they do.

Not many people realize that there could be other reasons behind that straight face. I won’t say it is an admirable thing not to laugh when you feel like doing so.

But there are explanations as to why people don’t laugh as much as there are names to call people in such a category.

I hope by now, you now have more than one choice on what to call someone who never laughs.

Thanks for reading.

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