consequence

noun
con·​se·​quence | \ˈkän(t)-sə-ˌkwen(t)s, -kwən(t)s\

Definition of consequence 

1 : a conclusion derived through logic : inference … we can deduce … many consequences each of which can be tested by experiment.— James Bryant Conant

2 : something produced by a cause or necessarily following from a set of conditions the economic consequences of the war This refined taste is the consequence of education and habit.— Joshua Reynolds

3a : importance with respect to power to produce an effect a mistake of no consequence a problem of grave international consequence

b : social importance a person of some consequence

4 : the appearance of importance especially : self-importance You will find his consequence very just and reasonable when you see him in his family. … He has a fine dignified manner, which suits the head of such a house … — Jane Austen

in consequence

: as a result

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Choose the Right Synonym for consequence

importance, consequence, moment, weight, significance mean a quality or aspect having great worth or significance. importance implies a value judgment of the superior worth or influence of something or someone. a region with no cities of importance consequence generally implies importance because of probable or possible effects. the style you choose is of little consequence moment implies conspicuous or self-evident consequence. a decision of great moment weight implies a judgment of the immediate relative importance of something. the argument carried no weight with the judge significance implies a quality or character that should mark a thing as important but that is not self-evident and may or may not be recognized. the treaty's significance

Examples of consequence in a Sentence

The slightest error can have serious consequences. What were the economic consequences of the war? The decrease in sales was a consequence of some bad publicity about the company. Some say many jobs will be lost as a consequence of the trade agreement. He weighed the consequences of making a career change. The style you choose is of no consequence.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Getting into character apparently required that Stone wear a corset during filming, which had some unintended consequences. Halie Lesavage, Glamour, "Emma Stone on the 'Gross' Way Wearing a Corset for a Role Changed Her Body," 28 Oct. 2018 Effects of Intel's CPU shortage So far, Intel’s sputtering shift to 10nm has caused talk of shortages, but without too many consequences, both firms said. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft cracks the top 5 U.S. PC vendors, but Intel CPU shortages could bring more change," 11 Oct. 2018 Call it an unintended consequence of the league’s popularity. Gary Peterson, sacbee, "Breaking the NBA? On the contrary, the Warriors are doing it a favor," 12 July 2018 And as the New York Times wrote last month, the card can sometimes have the unintended consequence of flagging a person's undocumented status. Samantha Schmidt, chicagotribune.com, "A couple visited their soldier son-in-law on July 4. The Army turned them over to ICE.," 10 July 2018 But that tinkering can have unintended consequences – like making our food less nutritious. Emily Hopkins, Cincinnati.com, "Your produce is less healthy than it was 70 years ago. These farmers might change that," 4 July 2018 The vaquita's rapid decline is an unintended consequence of the increasing demand for tatoaba, a type of fish that can fetch up to $10,000 each on the Chinese black market. CBS News, "Inside the effort to save the world's most endangered marine mammal, the vaquita," 30 June 2018 Meanwhile, Stephen Breyer’s dissent, in which the other liberal Justices joined, pretty clearly pointed to a potentially unintended consequence of this decision. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "SCOTUS Rules Against California Law Requiring Anti-Abortion Centers To Tell Whole Truth," 26 June 2018 Even if families are reunited using their DNA, the tests could have unintended consequences. John Moore, National Geographic, "Could DNA Testing Reunite Immigrant Families? Get the Facts.," 25 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of consequence

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for consequence

see consequent entry 1

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Last Updated

15 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for consequence

The first known use of consequence was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for consequence

consequence

noun

English Language Learners Definition of consequence

: something that happens as a result of a particular action or set of conditions

: importance or value

consequence

noun
con·​se·​quence | \ˈkän-sə-ˌkwens \

Kids Definition of consequence

1 : something produced by a cause or following from a condition Her fear of stairs is a consequence of her fall.

2 : real importance His promotion is of no consequence to me.

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