Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

monotonous

play
adjective mo·not·o·nous \mə-ˈnä-tə-nəs, -ˈnät-nəs\

Simple Definition of monotonous

  • —used to describe something that is boring because it is always the same

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of monotonous

  1. 1 :  uttered or sounded in one unvarying tone :  marked by a sameness of pitch and intensity

  2. 2 :  tediously uniform or unvarying

monotonously

adverb

monotonousness

noun

Examples of monotonous in a sentence

  1. Altogether, millions of mostly obscure entries in the public record offer details of a forced labor system of monotonous enormity. —Douglas A. Blackmon, Slavery By Another Name, 2008

  2. At times, the grayness of the place was consumed by its own monotonous noise, of bars clanging, of inmates being led through the corridors, of guards yelling out orders … —Benjamin Weiser, New York Times Magazine, 6 Aug. 2000

  3. The monotonous chant of the indoctrinated, ideologically armored from head to foot … —Philip Roth, American Pastoral, 1997

  4. The crickets stridulated their everlasting monotonous meaningful note. —John Updike, The Witches of Eastwick, 1984

  5. <the lecturer's monotonous delivery threatened to put us to sleep>



Origin and Etymology of monotonous

Greek monotonos, from mon- + tonos tone


First Known Use: 1776

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


MONOTONOUS Defined for Kids

monotonous

play
adjective mo·not·o·nous \mə-ˈnä-tə-nəs\

Definition of monotonous for Students

  1. :  boring from always being the same <Our trip across the ocean was monotonous.>

monotonously

adverb




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up monotonous? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

of striking ability or excellence

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

two-chairs-on-a-pier-by-the-ocean-in-summer

Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?

brumal estival hiemal vernal
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ