adjective dis·pa·rate \ˈdis-p(ə-)rət, di-ˈsper-ət, -ˈspa-rət\

Definition of disparate

  1. 1 :  containing or made up of fundamentally different and often incongruous elements

  2. 2 :  markedly distinct in quality or character






play \di-ˈsper-ə-tē, -ˈspa-rə-\ noun

Examples of disparate in a sentence

  1. First during the nineteen-seventies, but with increasing momentum during the eighties, a loose community of physics researchers had begun to postulate that the disparate small particles that we learned about in high-school science class—electrons, for instance—were actually the varied vibrations of tiny open and closed looped strings. —Benjamin Wallace-Wells, New Yorker, 21 July 2008

  2. The American border with Mexico is among the most economically disparate intersections in the world, but the cities on either side of the port looked almost identical—a spread of humble brick and cinder-block homes dotting a blanket of brown hills. —Cecilia Balli, Harper's, October 2006

  3. I made the French lemon cream tart that Greenspan credits to Hermé and got disparate reactions. An American friend loved its creaminess and felt it had a comfortingly familiar texture; a British friend … said he missed the traditional sharp, gel-like custard. —Tamasin Day-Lewis, Saveur, November 2006

  4. Like these imagined cities, identical twins are identical only in their blueprints. By the time they are born, they are already disparate in countless neurological and physiological ways that mostly we cannot see. —Frank J. Sulloway, New York Review, 30 Nov. 2006

  5. The plan, as near as anybody outside Yahoo can make out, is to stitch all those disparate organizations into one huge Frankenstein's monster of a search engine that will strike terror into the hearts of all who behold it. —Lev Grossman, Time, 22 Dec. 2003

  6. disparate notions among adults and adolescents about when middle age begins

Origin and Etymology of disparate

Middle English desparat, from Latin disparatus, past participle of disparare to separate, from dis- + parare to prepare — more at pare

First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of disparate

different, diverse, divergent, disparate, various mean unlike in kind or character. different may imply little more than separateness but it may also imply contrast or contrariness different foods. diverse implies both distinctness and marked contrast such diverse interests as dancing and football. divergent implies movement away from each other and unlikelihood of ultimate meeting or reconciliation went on to pursue divergent careers. disparate emphasizes incongruity or incompatibility disparate notions of freedom. various stresses the number of sorts or kinds tried various methods.

DISPARATE Defined for English Language Learners


adjective dis·pa·rate \ˈdis-p(ə-)rət, di-ˈsper-ət, -ˈspa-rət\

Definition of disparate for English Language Learners

  • : different from each other

Medical Dictionary


play play
adjective dis·pa·rate \dis-ˈpar-ət, ˈdis-p(ə-)rət\

Medical Definition of disparate

  1. :  indicating or stimulating dissimilar points on the retina of each eye

Seen and Heard

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a rounded knoll or a ridge of ice

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