ba·​nal·​i·​ty | \ bə-ˈna-lə-tē How to pronounce banality (audio) , bā- How to pronounce banality (audio) also ba- \
plural banalities

Definition of banality

1 : something that lacks originality, freshness, or novelty : something banal : commonplace
2 : the quality or state of lacking new or interesting qualities : the quality or state of being banal

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of banality in a Sentence

The trip offers an escape from the banalities of daily life. We exchanged banalities about the weather. The writing never rose above banality.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Thankfully for those easily traumatized by banality, those face-to-face instances are less common at the moment. Hannah Elliott,, "Forget Baking. During Covid-19, You Need to Learn How to Have a Conversation," 12 May 2020 In the movie, this is meant to emphasize the apparent banality of Shaun’s — and our own — everyday existence. Jack Butler, National Review, "Zombies in the Age of COVID-19," 21 Mar. 2020 Her future husband is a single father, and the couple has to build their relationship in the middle of the banalities of everyday life. Sheila Mcclear, Washington Post, "‘Make It Scream, Make It Burn’ presents a curiosity cabinet of subjects," 4 Oct. 2019 This novel is about the banality of the evil that is systemic misogyny. New York Times, "In This Korean Best Seller, a Young Mother Is Driven to Psychosis," 14 Apr. 2020 Quarantine life is quite monotonous and getting dolled up has been a nice escape from the banality of the day to day. Shalwah Evans, Essence, "These Celebrities Go Without Makeup During Quarantine And They Look Amazing," 13 Apr. 2020 Life for him is too absurd to wallow in tragedy and too depressing for feel-good banalities. Mark Richardson, WSJ, "‘Have We Met’ by Destroyer Review: The Drollest Figure in Rock," 29 Jan. 2020 The evening consists of short, episodic scenes marked by their banality despite the play's serious themes. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Anatomy of a Suicide': Theater Review," 19 Feb. 2020 On Adult Swim, Jena Friedman merged #MeToo comedy and prank shows, and downbeat loons like Joe Pera and Jo Firestone turned banality into hilarity. Jason Zinoman, New York Times, "Best Comedy of 2019," 25 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'banality.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of banality

1821, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for banality

see banal

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about banality

Time Traveler for banality

Time Traveler

The first known use of banality was in 1821

See more words from the same year

Statistics for banality

Last Updated

30 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Banality.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 May. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for banality


How to pronounce banality (audio) How to pronounce banality (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of banality

: something that is boring or ordinary especially : an uninteresting statement : a banal remark
: the quality of being ordinary or banal

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on banality

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

May 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a blooming wisteria tree
  • Which is a synonym of exiguous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!