dis·​cor·​dant | \ dis-ˈkȯr-dᵊnt How to pronounce discordant (audio) \

Definition of discordant

1a : being at variance : disagreeing discordant opinions
b : quarrelsome a discordant family
2 music : relating to a discord (see discord entry 1 sense 2) a discordant tone

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Other Words from discordant

discordantly adverb

Did You Know?

Discord, a word more common in earlier centuries than today, means basically "conflict", so discordant often means "conflicting". The opinions of Supreme Court justices are frequently discordant; justices who disagree with the Court's decision usually write a dissenting opinion. Discordant is often used with a somewhat musical meaning, suggesting that a single wrong note or harmony has been heard in the middle of a performance—even though musical words such as chord actually come from a different Latin word, meaning "cord" or "string" (a reference to the strings of ancient instruments such as the lyre).

Examples of discordant in a Sentence

She has the difficult task of bringing together a number of discordant elements. discordant tones coming from the poorly tuned instrument

Recent Examples on the Web

His message also is discordant with those coming from Mr. Trump, who has cast the midterms as a test of his first two years in office. Reid J. Epstein, WSJ, "Behind a GOP Congressman’s Odd Re-Election Strategy," 11 Oct. 2018 These overalls are a quiet constant in an increasingly inconsistent and discordant world—and every week Poehler delivers. Lourdes Avila Uribe, Glamour, "Amy Poehler's Making It Overalls Are the Only Pure Thing Left in the World," 16 Oct. 2018 Talks so far have been ad hoc and included a rotating and discordant cast of participants. Cliff Kupchan, WSJ, "Trump Made His Point. Now He Should Negotiate With Beijing," 30 July 2018 Some of the songs are raw or discordant, but Donicht says they are crafted to reveal harmony. Chris Bieri, Anchorage Daily News, "Life Ain’t Fairview Trio explores grittier side of Anchorage life in second album," 13 July 2018 His message also is discordant with those coming from Mr. Trump, who has cast the midterms as a test of his first two years in office. Fox News, "Video from 2011 creates headaches for Sinema," 12 Oct. 2018 But given Arcimoto has eight design revisions already under its belt and millions of dollars of equipment eventually arriving at this plant, that revelation strikes a discordant note. Edward Niedermeyer, Ars Technica, "Arcimoto raised $19 million to build “fun utility vehicles”—now what?," 11 July 2018 Trump's hyperbolic praise for a summit that was evidently discordant shows his refusal to allow any venture in which he is involved to be portrayed as anything other than a roaring success. Stephen Collinson, CNN, "The West is in crisis, despite Trump's glowing assessment," 9 June 2018 This year, López Obrador has reached out to Mexico’s private sector and former members of the PRI, forming a campaign team that includes a range of advisers with seemingly discordant views. Kevin Sieff, Washington Post, "A man who goes by AMLO is the favorite to win Mexico’s presidential election," 29 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for discordant

see discord entry 2

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Statistics for discordant

Last Updated

18 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for discordant

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

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More Definitions for discordant



English Language Learners Definition of discordant

: harsh or unpleasant in sound
: not agreeing : not in harmony


dis·​cor·​dant | \ dis-ˈkȯr-dᵊnt How to pronounce discordant (audio) \

Kids Definition of discordant

: being in disagreement discordant opinions


dis·​cor·​dant | \ dis-ˈkȯrd-ᵊnt How to pronounce discordant (audio) \

Medical Definition of discordant

of twins
: dissimilar with respect to one or more particular characters — compare concordant

Other Words from discordant

discordance \ -​ᵊn(t)s How to pronounce discordance (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on discordant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for discordant

Spanish Central: Translation of discordant

Nglish: Translation of discordant for Spanish Speakers

Comments on discordant

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


to boil down or concentrate

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