Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

neglect

play
verb ne·glect \ni-ˈglekt\

Simple Definition of neglect

  • : to fail to take care of or to give attention to (someone or something)

  • : to fail to do (something)

Full Definition of neglect

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to give little attention or respect to :  disregard

  3. 2 :  to leave undone or unattended to especially through carelessness

ne·glect·er noun

Examples of neglect

  1. The building has been neglected for years.

  2. The city has neglected the teacher shortage for too long.

  3. The prison guard neglected his duty.



Origin of neglect

Latin neglectus, past participle of neglegere, neclegere, from nec- not (akin to ne- not) + legere to gather — more at no, legend


First Known Use: 1529

Synonym Discussion of neglect

neglect, disregard, ignore, overlook, slight, forget mean to pass over without giving due attention. neglect implies giving insufficient attention to something that merits one's attention <habitually neglected his studies>. disregard suggests voluntary inattention <disregarded the wishes of his family>. ignore implies a failure to regard something obvious <ignored the snide remark>. overlook suggests disregarding or ignoring through haste or lack of care <in my rush I overlooked a key example>. slight implies contemptuous or disdainful disregarding or omitting <slighted several major authors in her survey>. forget may suggest either a willful ignoring or a failure to impress something on one's mind <forget what others say>.

2

neglect

noun ne·glect

Simple Definition of neglect

  • : lack of attention or care that someone or something needs

  • : the condition of not being taken care of

Full Definition of neglect

  1. 1 :  an act or instance of neglecting something

  2. 2 :  the condition of being neglected

Examples of neglect

  1. The park was overgrown and littered from years of neglect.

  2. The parents were charged with child neglect.

  3. The house is in a state of neglect.



1588

First Known Use of neglect

1588



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

February 11, 2016

the holder of an office

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

2.2 pounds 16.96 pounds 100 pounds 196.5 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

TAKE THE QUIZ