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obscene

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adjective ob·scene \äb-ˈsēn, əb-\

Simple Definition of obscene

  • : relating to sex in an indecent or offensive way

  • : very offensive in usually a shocking way

  • : so large an amount or size as to be very shocking or unfair

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of obscene

  1. 1 :  disgusting to the senses :  repulsive

  2. 2 a :  abhorrent to morality or virtue; specifically :  designed to incite to lust or depravity b :  containing or being language regarded as taboo in polite usage <obscene lyrics> c :  repulsive by reason of crass disregard of moral or ethical principles <an obscene misuse of power> d :  so excessive as to be offensive <obscene wealth> <obscene waste>

obscenely adverb

Examples of obscene in a sentence

  1. He was accused of making obscene phone calls.

  2. He made an obscene gesture at the driver who cut him off.

  3. The company's executives earn obscene salaries.

  4. He spends an obscene amount of money on clothes.



Origin of obscene

Middle French, from Latin obscenus, obscaenus


First Known Use: 1593

Synonym Discussion of obscene

coarse, vulgar, gross, obscene, ribald mean offensive to good taste or morals. coarse implies roughness, rudeness, or crudeness of spirit, behavior, or language <found the coarse humor of coworkers offensive>. vulgar often implies boorishness or ill-breeding <a loud vulgar belch>. gross implies extreme coarseness and insensitiveness <gross eating habits>. obscene applies to anything strongly repulsive to the sense of decency and propriety especially in sexual matters <obscene language not allowed on the air>. ribald applies to what is amusingly or picturesquely vulgar or irreverent or mildly indecent <entertained the campers with ribald folk songs>.

OBSCENE Defined for Kids

obscene

play
adjective ob·scene \äb-ˈsēn, əb-\

Definition of obscene for Students

  1. :  very shocking to a person's sense of what is moral or decent




Law Dictionary

obscene

play
adjective ob·scene \äb-ˈsēn\

Legal Definition of obscene

  1. :  extremely or deeply offensive according to contemporary community standards of morality or decency — see also Roth v. United States



Additional Notes on obscene

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that obscene applies to materials that appeal predominantly to a prurient interest in sexual conduct, depict or describe sexual conduct in a patently offensive way, and lack serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value. Material or expression deemed obscene by the court is not protected by the free speech guarantee of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Origin of obscene

Middle French, from Latin obscenus obscaenus indecent, lewd



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