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extreme cruelty n
: behavior toward a spouse that involves physical violence or threats thereof, acts calculated to destroy the peace of mind or health of the spouse, or acts destructive of the purpose of the marriage
: a ground for divorce based on a spouse's extreme cruelty
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.