dis·​or·​der·​ly | \ -ˈȯrd-ər-lē How to pronounce disorderly (audio) \

Definition of disorderly

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: in a disorderly manner



Definition of disorderly (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : engaged in conduct offensive to public order charged with being drunk and disorderly
2 : characterized by disorder a disorderly pile of clothes

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from disorderly


disorderliness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for disorderly

Synonyms: Adjective

anarchic (also anarchical), lawbreaking, lawless, unruly

Antonyms: Adjective

law-abiding, orderly

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of disorderly in a Sentence


She was charged with being drunk and disorderly. He was found guilty of disorderly conduct.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Advocates for strict discipline say some schools have become more disorderly as students learned administrators were under pressure to decrease suspensions. Leslie Brody, WSJ, "NYC Student Suspensions Rise as Advocates Call for Change," 31 Oct. 2018 The room where officers found the boy was disorderly and contained no furniture, police said. Stephen Sorace, Fox News, "Dad charged with child abuse homicide after son, 2, shoots self, authorities say," 8 June 2018 Were police in Washington right to arrest 21 partygoers for being disorderly and trespassing in 2008 at a booze- and drug-fueled bachelor party replete with strippers and hosted by a woman named Peaches? Josh Hafner, USA TODAY, "OnPolitics Today: The shutdown gets shut down," 22 Jan. 2018 Removing drunk, disorderly patrons from businesses no longer wanting their patronage in the wee hours of the morning is part of their job description. Amanda Walker, AL.com, "Will you boycott Waffle House, or boycott the boycott?," 3 May 2018 Police and other officials have tried tightening rules regarding the wild pub crawls and disorderly behavior. Elizabeth Llorente | Fox News, Fox News, "Prostitutes and British tourists in violent clashes at notorious party resort in Spain," 3 June 2018 Our officers responded to 318 Miracle Strip Parkway, SW, at 0129 hours in reference to a disorderly incident between staff and a customer. Breanna Edwards, The Root, "Are We Done Yet With Waffle House? Viral Video Shows Black Couple Being Arrested for Questioning Juice Charge at Florida Waffle House," 14 June 2018 For his part, Mr. Rice has proposed his own marijuana bill that would decriminalize the possession of 10 grams or less of marijuana, and make carrying more a disorderly persons charge that would impose only a fine. Karen Rouse, New York Times, "Racial Justice Drives Fight for, and Against, Legal Pot in New Jersey," 11 Mar. 2018 Ben Gamel looked like someone kicked out of multiple Georgia softball leagues for disorderly behavior. Si.com Staff, SI.com, "Nine Innings: Solving the Yankees' Sonny Gray Problem, AL East Deciding Factors and Our Favorite Statcast Quirks," 2 July 2018

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


1560, in the meaning defined above


1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about disorderly

Share disorderly

Statistics for disorderly

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for disorderly

The first known use of disorderly was in 1555

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for disorderly



English Language Learners Definition of disorderly

: causing a problem especially in a public place by making a lot of noise, behaving violently, etc.
: not neat or orderly


dis·​or·​der·​ly | \ dis-ˈȯr-dər-lē How to pronounce disorderly (audio) \

Kids Definition of disorderly

1 : not behaving quietly or well : unruly disorderly students
2 : not neat or orderly a disorderly desk

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on disorderly

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for disorderly

Spanish Central: Translation of disorderly

Nglish: Translation of disorderly for Spanish Speakers

Comments on disorderly

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


to reflect, repel, echo, or resound

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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