dis·​pro·​por·​tion·​ate | \-sh(ə-)nət \

Definition of disproportionate 

: being out of proportion a disproportionate share

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Other Words from disproportionate

disproportionately adverb

Examples of disproportionate in a Sentence

He believes that middle-class people bear a disproportionate share of the tax burden. A disproportionate number of the students are poor.

Recent Examples on the Web

The New York and Washington, DC, metropolitan areas enjoy a disproportionate share of the nation's high-paying jobs and suffer from some of the region's highest housing costs. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Amazon is getting more than $2 billion for NYC and Virginia expansions," 13 Nov. 2018 That means falling yields could have a disproportionate impact on beer production, making a cold beer costlier and harder to come by, the researchers said in the study, published Monday in the journal Nature Plants. Robert Lee Hotz, WSJ, "Beer Makers’ Steps to Mitigate Climate Change Might Not Be Enough, Study Shows," 15 Oct. 2018 According to a State Department spokesperson, the cuts were due to a disproportionate share of the burden and an endlessly expanding recipient pool. Trey Yingst, Fox News, "Palestinians decry US decision to cut aid to UN agency, call it a 'big mistake'," 7 Sep. 2018 Even so, researchers believe the programs could have a disproportionate impact. Mattie Kahn, Glamour, "Inside a Radical Experiment to Transform the Lives of Incarcerated Women," 22 Aug. 2018 There are systemic causes of the violence that causes the disproportionate rate of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, of which a great many cases go unsolved. Maka Monture, Teen Vogue, "10 Native Activism Organizations to Show Your Support This Thanksgiving," 22 Nov. 2018 Racial profiling, disproportionate arrest and incarceration rates, and biased apprehension tactics such as stop-and-frisk work to make black immigrants especially vulnerable to draconian immigration enforcement tactics. Shamira Ibrahim, Daily Intelligencer, "Patricia Okoumou and the Threat to Black Immigrants," 13 July 2018 The rising tide of pedestrian deaths is primarily an urban plague that kills minorities at a disproportionate rate. Detroit Free Press, "Death on foot," 28 June 2018 At the municipal level, left-leaning district attorneys like Larry Krasner have been able to immediately and substantively change harsh policies that put poor people of color in jail at disproportionate rates. Sarah Jones, The New Republic, "Keith Ellison is leaving Congress.," 5 June 2018

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

1555, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for disproportionate

Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for disproportionate

The first known use of disproportionate was in 1555

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More Definitions for disproportionate



English Language Learners Definition of disproportionate

: having or showing a difference that is not fair, reasonable, or expected : too large or too small in relation to something

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More from Merriam-Webster on disproportionate

Spanish Central: Translation of disproportionate

Nglish: Translation of disproportionate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of disproportionate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on disproportionate

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


living or existing for a long time

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