depravity

noun

de·​prav·​i·​ty di-ˈpra-və-tē How to pronounce depravity (audio)
 also  -ˈprā-
plural depravities
1
: a corrupt act or practice
the depravities of war
2
: the quality or state of being corrupt, evil, or perverted : the quality or state of being depraved
He is awed by its fabulous wealth but deeply troubled by what he sees as its moral depravityNicholas D. Kristof

Examples of depravity in a Sentence

He was sinking into a life of utter depravity. People were shocked by the depravity of her actions.
Recent Examples on the Web Church officials knew about Ramos’ depravity almost from the beginning of his career, yet never turned him over to law enforcement or even removed him from the ministry. Gustavo Arellano, Los Angeles Times, 25 Jan. 2024 The videos reveal a civic depravity cut with pure ingenuity: Drivers chip away at the paint, put on reflective tape, bend the plates, use temporary tags, and add retractable covers. Clio Chang, Curbed, 11 Dec. 2023 Many of America’s great cities are collapsing into squalor and depravity, in part because of the maladministration that a year-zero mentality produces. Daniel Foster, National Review, 30 Nov. 2023 In the gulf between Logan’s unrelenting control and the futures that his kids envisioned for their family’s company, the show forced the Roy siblings to confront one another’s depravities again and again. Megan Garber, The Atlantic, 19 Dec. 2023 One need only look at the rampant moral depravity on college campuses to find examples of successful indoctrination. WSJ, 28 Nov. 2023 Hamas’ crimes are unfathomable in their depravity and inhumanity. Anthony Man, Sun Sentinel, 16 Jan. 2024 Kevin grasped the depth of Marv and Harry’s depravity and planned accordingly by setting out his elaborate booby traps with ingenuity and precision. Gregory M. Collins, National Review, 27 Dec. 2023 Hamas’s war crimes are equal in depravity to those of the Nazis; their magnitude is far less only because Jews now have a fortified homeland and an Israeli army. Jerome M. Marcus, WSJ, 23 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'depravity.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

see deprave

First Known Use

1641, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of depravity was in 1641

Dictionary Entries Near depravity

Cite this Entry

“Depravity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/depravity. Accessed 25 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

depravity

noun
de·​prav·​i·​ty di-ˈprav-ət-ē How to pronounce depravity (audio)
plural depravities
1
: a corrupt act or practice
2
: the quality or state of being depraved

Legal Definition

depravity

noun
de·​prav·​i·​ty di-ˈpra-və-tē How to pronounce depravity (audio)
plural depravities
1
: the quality or state of being depraved
2
: a corrupt act or practice

More from Merriam-Webster on depravity

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