con·​spic·​u·​ous | \ kən-ˈspi-kyə-wəs How to pronounce conspicuous (audio) , -kyü-əs \

Definition of conspicuous

1 : obvious to the eye or mind conspicuous changes The bird has a conspicuous red head.
2 : attracting attention : striking a conspicuous success His absence was conspicuous.
3 : marked by a noticeable violation of good taste

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from conspicuous

conspicuously adverb
conspicuousness \ kən-​ˈspi-​kyə-​wəs-​nəs How to pronounce conspicuous (audio) , -​kyü-​əs-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for conspicuous

noticeable, remarkable, prominent, outstanding, conspicuous, salient, striking mean attracting notice or attention. noticeable applies to something unlikely to escape observation. a piano recital with no noticeable errors remarkable applies to something so extraordinary or exceptional as to invite comment. a film of remarkable intelligence and wit prominent applies to something commanding notice by standing out from its surroundings or background. a doctor who occupies a prominent position in the town outstanding applies to something that rises above and excels others of the same kind. honored for her outstanding contributions to science conspicuous applies to something that is obvious and unavoidable to the sight or mind. conspicuous bureaucratic waste salient applies to something of significance that merits the attention given it. the salient points of the speech striking applies to something that impresses itself powerfully and deeply upon the observer's mind or vision. the region's striking poverty

Examples of conspicuous in a Sentence

Conspicuous species of large organisms with small populations are vulnerable—and several fishes and marine mammals, including Steller's sea cow, have succumbed. — Stephen Jay Gould, Natural History, June 1991 Its most conspicuous feature was knee breeches, which showed off his well-turned legs and feet. — Richard Ellmann, Oscar Wilde, 1984 There were a number of conspicuous changes to the building. The sign was placed in a very conspicuous spot. The bird has a conspicuous red head. She felt very conspicuous in her pink coat. He was uncomfortable about his conspicuous weight gain. The business was a conspicuous success.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Marcell von Berlin clothing appeals to the independent, self-confident individual who is not typically trendy, but aspires to be conspicuous out in the streets. Joseph Deacetis, Forbes, 16 Sep. 2021 That’s why one absence from the list of companies supporting the global privacy control is so conspicuous. Gilad Edelman, Wired, 30 July 2021 Even aducanumab’s staggering price tag of $56,000 a patient per year may not be conspicuous enough, because few will pay the full cost themselves. Benjamin Mazer, The Atlantic, 13 July 2021 While the prevalence of vaccine misinformation has been especially conspicuous of late, this is hardly a new practice at Fox. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 13 July 2021 And once on those calls, having all employees use standardized backgrounds in virtual meetings can take away the conspicuous, jealousy-inducing status symbol of working from a more desirable location (e.g. a beach). Adam Galinsky, Time, 10 Aug. 2021 His oversized Library of Congress medal was conspicuous hanging from his neck. Rumaan Alam, The New Yorker, 9 Aug. 2021 Now, experts warn, the movement formerly known as QAnon is metastasizing into a less conspicuous, larger and more powerful political force. Alex Connor, USA TODAY, 9 Aug. 2021 While most of the world focused on his thrilling performance, others were equally interested in the conspicuous, circular bruises on his back and shoulders. Nicholas B. Tiller, Quartz, 6 Aug. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conspicuous.' 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 conspicuous

circa 1534, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for conspicuous

Latin conspicuus, from conspicere to get sight of, from com- + specere to look — more at spy

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About conspicuous

Time Traveler for conspicuous

Time Traveler

The first known use of conspicuous was circa 1534

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near conspicuous



conspicuous consumption

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for conspicuous

Last Updated

21 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Conspicuous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for conspicuous



English Language Learners Definition of conspicuous

: very easy to see or notice
: attracting attention by being great or impressive


con·​spic·​u·​ous | \ kən-ˈspi-kyə-wəs How to pronounce conspicuous (audio) \

Kids Definition of conspicuous

1 : easily seen Put the sign in a conspicuous spot.
2 : attracting attention : prominent I felt conspicuous as I walked in late.

Other Words from conspicuous

conspicuously adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on conspicuous

Nglish: Translation of conspicuous for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of conspicuous for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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