dis·​pro·​por·​tion·​ate ˌdis-prə-ˈpȯr-sh(ə-)nət How to pronounce disproportionate (audio)
: being out of proportion
a disproportionate share
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 Genetic tests represent a disproportionate source of payment errors, appeals, and overturns. Rajeev Ronanki, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 This first major round of licenses since legal recreational sales began in July is tailored to benefit people from communities most affected by the war on drugs, which had a disproportionate impact on Black people. Katie Shepherd, Washington Post, 12 Feb. 2024 Armstead recognizes the disproportionate struggle of Black students due to a lack of resources and lack of funding. Marcus D. Smith, Sacramento Bee, 9 Feb. 2024 Still, the ever-growing affordability crisis, as Warren and her colleagues put it, places a disproportionate burden on Black and Hispanic families with lower homeownership rates. Alena Botros, Fortune, 30 Jan. 2024 Some puffer-style vests can be difficult to fold and take up a disproportionate amount of space. Jessica MacDonald, Travel + Leisure, 29 Jan. 2024 That the small percentage of mixed-race (mulatto) population holds a disproportionate portion of the wealth and power over the 95% Black majority fuels the anger and distrust of the masses. Carlos Aguilar, Variety, 24 Jan. 2024 Many times this led to disproportionate restriction of freedom of expression or to underenforcement of content promoting or inciting violence. Vittoria Elliott, WIRED, 26 Jan. 2024 That’s an disproportionate number compared to the overall Black population in Sacramento County of 13%. Theresa Clift, Sacramento Bee, 24 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'disproportionate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


borrowed from Medieval Latin disprōportiōnātus, past participle of disprōportiōnāre "to make out of proportion," from Latin dis- dis- + Medieval Latin prōportiōnāre "to compose according to proportions" — more at proportion entry 2

First Known Use

1555, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of disproportionate was in 1555

Dictionary Entries Near disproportionate

Cite this Entry

“Disproportionate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/disproportionate. Accessed 20 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


dis·​pro·​por·​tion·​ate ˌdis-prə-ˈpōr-sh(ə-)nət How to pronounce disproportionate (audio)
: being out of proportion
disproportionately adverb
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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