disinterested

adjective
dis·​in·​ter·​est·​ed | \ (ˌ)dis-ˈin-trə-stəd How to pronounce disinterested (audio) ; -ˈin-tə-ˌre-, -tə-rə-, -tər-; -ˈin-ˌtre- \

Definition of disinterested

1a : not having the mind or feelings engaged (see engaged sense 1) : not interested telling them in a disinterested voice— Tom Wicker disinterested in women— J. A. Brussel
b : no longer interested husband and wife become disinterested in each other— T. I. Rubin
2 : free from selfish motive or interest (see interest entry 1 sense 1a) : unbiased a disinterested decision disinterested intellectual curiosity is the lifeblood of real civilization— G. M. Trevelyan

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Other Words from disinterested

disinterestedly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for disinterested

indifferent, unconcerned, incurious, aloof, detached, disinterested mean not showing or feeling interest. indifferent implies neutrality of attitude from lack of inclination, preference, or prejudice. indifferent to the dictates of fashion unconcerned suggests a lack of sensitivity or regard for others' needs or troubles. unconcerned about the homeless incurious implies an inability to take a normal interest due to dullness of mind or to self-centeredness. incurious about the world aloof suggests a cool reserve arising from a sense of superiority or disdain for inferiors or from shyness. aloof from his coworkers detached implies an objective attitude achieved through absence of prejudice or selfishness. observed family gatherings with detached amusement disinterested implies a circumstantial freedom from concern for personal or especially financial advantage that enables one to judge or advise without bias. judged by a panel of disinterested observers

Disinterested vs. Uninterested: Usage Guide

Disinterested and uninterested have a tangled history. Uninterested originally meant impartial, but this sense fell into disuse during the 18th century. About the same time the original sense of disinterested also disappeared, with uninterested developing a new sense—the present meaning—to take its place. The original sense of uninterested is still out of use, but the original sense of disinterested revived in the early 20th century. The revival has since been under frequent attack as an illiteracy and a blurring or loss of a useful distinction. Actual usage shows otherwise. The "free from selfish interest" sense of disinterested is still its most frequent sense, especially in edited prose; it shows no sign of vanishing. Further, disinterested has developed an additional sense—"no longer interested"—perhaps influenced by the "deprive of" sense of the prefix dis-, that contrasts with uninterested. when I grow tired or disinterested in anything, I experience a disgust — Jack London, letter, 1914 Still, use of the "not interested" and "no longer interested" senses of disinterested will incur the disapproval of some who may not fully appreciate the history of this word or the subtleties of its present use.

Examples of disinterested in a Sentence

the disinterested pursuit of truth the city's philistines, naturally disinterested in art, voted to cut the museum's budget
Recent Examples on the Web To overcome this complication, his expression of loyalty must take the form of a sign which, at least on its textual surface, indicates a level of disinterested conviction. Kathryn Jean Lopez, National Review, "Black Lives Matter, a Presidential Election, the Green Grocer, and Us," 14 Sep. 2020 Sadly, my Nostradamian exploits curried me no favor with my disinterested text chain. Joe Freeman, oregonlive, "The NBA’s great awakening, redoing Trail Blazers’ worst trade, Nuggets-Jazz Game 7, thanking Chris Paul: NBA news and notes," 1 Sep. 2020 What if the disinterested machines that surround us and encroach on every aspect of our lives were sensitive to our emotional states? Adrian Woolfson, WSJ, "‘Girl Decoded’ Review: The Soulfulness of a New Machine," 2 June 2020 Just this week, Wall Street has begun to reconsider its disinterested stance toward the Democratic frontrunner. Joshua Green, Bloomberg.com, "Wall Street Gives Bernie Sanders a Pass…for Now," 10 May 2020 Can London view a European court as a disinterested referee? Jonathan Stearns, Bloomberg.com, "The Five Big Flashpoints in Boris Johnson’s Battle With Brussels," 29 Apr. 2020 Think of the disinterested spring breakers on Florida’s beaches in mid-March. Arash Javanbakht, The Conversation, "Lethargic global response to COVID-19: How the human brain’s failure to assess abstract threats cost us dearly," 27 Apr. 2020 The trial was more fake than even the disinterested public could have anticipated—the first impeachment trial in the Senate’s history not to call a single witness. Susan B. Glasser, The New Yorker, "The Wrenching Truth About Mitt Romney’s Vote Is That It Doesn’t Matter," 6 Feb. 2020 Playing the second night of a back-to-back, the Thunder looked totally disinterested in mounting any kind of comeback. Matt Velazquez, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Bucks 133, Thunder 86: From a real game to a blowout in a matter of minutes," 28 Feb. 2020

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

circa 1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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The first known use of disinterested was circa 1612

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Cite this Entry

“Disinterested.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disinterested. Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for disinterested

disinterested

adjective
How to pronounce disinterested (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of disinterested

: not influenced by personal feelings, opinions, or concerns
: having no desire to know about a particular thing : not interested

disinterested

adjective
dis·​in·​ter·​est·​ed | \ dis-ˈin-trə-stəd How to pronounce disinterested (audio) , -ˈin-tə-rə- \

Kids Definition of disinterested

1 : not interested disinterested in sports
2 : not influenced by personal feelings or concerns a disinterested judge

disinterested

adjective
dis·​in·​ter·​est·​ed | \ dis-ˈin-tə-rəs-təd, -ˈin-trəs-, -ˈin-tə-ˌres- How to pronounce disinterested (audio) \

Legal Definition of disinterested

: free of any interest especially of a pecuniary nature : impartial a disinterested person to witness the will

More from Merriam-Webster on disinterested

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for disinterested

Nglish: Translation of disinterested for Spanish Speakers

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