dis·​crep·​an·​cy | \ di-ˈskre-pən-sē How to pronounce discrepancy (audio) \
plural discrepancies

Definition of discrepancy

1 : the quality or state of disagreeing or being at variance
2 : an instance of disagreeing or being at variance

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Examples of discrepancy in a Sentence

Dr. Derman, who spent 17 years at Goldman Sachs and became managing director, was a forerunner of the many physicists and other scientists who have flooded Wall Street in recent years, moving from a world in which a discrepancy of a few percentage points in a measurement can mean a Nobel Prize or unending mockery to a world in which a few percent one way can land you in jail and a few percent the other way can win you your own private Caribbean island. — Dennis Overbye, New York Times, 9 Mar. 2009 Why the difference? Why are some individuals so outwardly altered by time and others not? Or, in other words, why is there often a discrepancy between chronological age and biological age? Time, 17 Oct. 2005 If an article is on one machine but not the other, a copy is made to eliminate the discrepancy. — Simson Garfinkel, Technology Review, November 2001 The discrepancy can't be written off simply as lack of data, because it shows up in one of the best-studied periods in Earth's history … — Tim Appenzeller, Science, 12 Feb. 1993 Discrepancies in the firm's financial statements led to an investigation. There were discrepancies between their accounts of the accident.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Court records and interviews with police departments across the country show this was not an isolated episode of officers airbrushing aside a discrepancy. Nicholas Bogel-burroughs, BostonGlobe.com, "Police Photoshopped his mug shot for a lineup. He’s not the only one.," 24 Aug. 2019 That might explain the cost discrepancy, Wiener said. Rachel Swan, SFChronicle.com, "Caltrans seeks to steamroll bill to include bike lanes, crosswalks in road projects," 23 Aug. 2019 Rely on facts and figures when faced with a discrepancy. Eugenia Last, The Mercury News, "Horoscopes: Aug. 23, 2019," 23 Aug. 2019 On Monday, a scoring discrepancy led to a brief stoppage in play when a scoreboard error caused Lee to pause before the umpire realized what was happening. Chris Bumbaca, USA TODAY, "Deaf tennis player, South Korea's Duckhee Lee, wins match to make ATP Tour history," 21 Aug. 2019 Totenberg also ordered state officials to develop a plan by Jan. 3 to address errors and discrepancies in the state's voter registration database. CBS News, "Judge orders paper ballot contingency plan for Georgia elections," 16 Aug. 2019 The discrepancy may boil down to use patterns, the study suggests. Jamie Ducharme, Time, "Social Media Hurts Girls More Than Boys," 13 Aug. 2019 Smaller districts shared similar discrepancies with the Courier Journal. Mandy Mclaren, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky teacher shortage: Are 'thousands' of jobs actually vacant?," 12 Aug. 2019 When attempting to enter the warrant into the system, a dispatcher noticed discrepancies. cleveland.com, "New York woman becomes irate after trying to buy cigarettes: Bay Village Police Blotter," 9 Aug. 2019

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for discrepancy

earlier discrepance in same sense (borrowed from Latin discrepantia, derivative of discrepant-, discrepans, present participle of discrepāre "to differ in sound, be out of tune, be inconsistent") + -ancy — more at discrepant

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Statistics for discrepancy

Last Updated

27 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for discrepancy

The first known use of discrepancy was in 1579

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More Definitions for discrepancy



English Language Learners Definition of discrepancy

: a difference especially between things that should be the same


dis·​crep·​an·​cy | \ di-ˈskre-pən-sē How to pronounce discrepancy (audio) \

Kids Definition of discrepancy

: a difference between things that are expected to be the same There is a discrepancy in the records.

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Comments on discrepancy

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


formidable, illustrious, or eminent

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