Literally, rigor means stiffness. This is the sense in which it is used in the phrase "rigor mortis".

Rigor also refers to formalism in logic or argument. A rigorous argument is one whose terms and steps are well-defined. It may or may not be valid and/or sound. However, if an argument is not rigorous, there is a good chance it is nonsense or at least no more than rhetoric.

Ri"gor (?), n. [L. See Rigor., below.]


Rigidity; stiffness.

2. ed.

A sense of chilliness, with contraction of the skin; a convulsive shuddering or tremor, as in the chill preceeding a fever.

Rigor caloris () [L., rigor of heat] Physiol., a form of rigor mortis induced by heat, as when the muscle of a mammal is heated to about 50°C. -- Rigor mortis () [L. , rigor of death] , death stiffening; the rigidity of the muscles that occurs at death and lasts till decomposition sets in. It is due to the formation of myosin by the coagulation of the contents of the individual muscle fibers.


© Webster 1913.

Rig"or (?), n. [OE. rigour, OF. rigour, F. rigueur, from L. rigor, fr. rigere to be stiff. See Rigid.] [Written also rigour.]


The becoming stiff or rigid; the state of being rigid; rigidity; stiffness; hardness.

The rest his look Bound with Gorgonian rigor not to move. Milton.

2. Med.

See 1st Rigor, 2.


Severity of climate or season; inclemency; as, the rigor of the storm; the rigors of winter.


Stiffness of opinion or temper; rugged sternness; hardness; relentless severity; hard-heartedness; cruelty.

All his rigor is turned to grief and pity. Denham.

If I shall be condemn'd Upon surmises, . . . I tell you 'T is rigor and not law. Shak.


Exactness without allowance, deviation, or indulgence; strictness; as, the rigor of criticism; to execute a law with rigor; to enforce moral duties with rigor; -- opposed to lenity.


Severity of life; austerity; voluntary submission to pain, abstinence, or mortification.

The prince lived in this convent with all the rigor and austerity of a capuchin. Addison.


Violence; force; fury.


Whose raging rigor neither steel nor brass could stay. Spenser.

Syn. -- Stiffness; rigidness; inflexibility; severity; austerity; sternness; harshness; strictness; exactness.


© Webster 1913.

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