haphazard

adjective
hap·​haz·​ard | \ (ˌ)hap-ˈha-zərd How to pronounce haphazard (audio) \

Definition of haphazard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: marked by lack of plan, order, or direction a haphazard assemblage of furniture not … a collection of haphazard schemes, but rather the orderly component parts of a connected and logical whole— F. D. Roosevelt

haphazard

noun

Definition of haphazard (Entry 2 of 2)

: chance sense 1 this little remnant preserved by the haphazard of chance— Edith Hamilton take our principles at haphazard— John Locke

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Other Words from haphazard

Adjective

haphazard adverb
haphazardly adverb
haphazardness noun
haphazardry \ (ˌ)hap-​ˈha-​zər-​drē How to pronounce haphazardry (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for haphazard

Adjective

random, haphazard, casual mean determined by accident rather than design. random stresses lack of definite aim, fixed goal, or regular procedure. a random selection of books haphazard applies to what is done without regard for regularity or fitness or ultimate consequence. a haphazard collection of rocks casual suggests working or acting without deliberation, intention, or purpose. a casual collector

Did You Know?

Noun

The "hap" in "haphazard" comes from an English word that means "happening," as well as "chance or fortune," and that derives from the Old Norse word happ, meaning "good luck." Perhaps it’s no accident that "hazard," as well, has its own connotations of luck: while it now refers commonly to something that presents danger, at one time it referred to a dice game similar to craps. (The name ultimately derives from the Arabic al-zahr, or "the die.") "Haphazard" first entered English as a noun (again meaning "chance") in the 16th century, and soon afterward was being used as an adjective to describe things with no apparent logic or order.

Examples of haphazard in a Sentence

Adjective

We were given a haphazard tour of the city. considering the haphazard way you measured the ingredients, it's a wonder the cookies came out this good

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

But despite the outwardly sleek online operation, Bessrochka’s offline tactics are more haphazard. Washington Post, "Russian protesters aided by digital tools, self-organizing," 6 Sep. 2019 Inside the stock is haphazard, unalphabetical, and sometimes in piles on the floor. The Economist, "Obituary: Richard Booth died on August 20th," 29 Aug. 2019 The years that followed were a bit haphazard, as some teams adopted NOBs and others didn't. Paul Lukas, SI.com, "The History of Nicknames on Jerseys in Baseball, Before MLB Players' Weekend," 23 Aug. 2019 Verbose, diffuse and full of stories about people one has never heard of, amid the haphazard recollections in this book lurk some real gems—eye-opening snippets on the society of the day, when the ideal waist measurement was 18 inches. Anne De Courcy, WSJ, "Five Best: Anne de Courcy on Books About Society in the Gilded Age," 5 Oct. 2018 Pornography is a multibillion-dollar industry and has been part of human history for millennia, but serious study of the subject has been haphazard at best. Matt Schudel, Washington Post, "Ralph Whittington, erotica collector extraordinaire, dies at 74," 17 Aug. 2019 By definition, the appeal of coworking is about community, something more personal than the office cubicle, and less haphazard than a table at a coffee shop. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Can coworking companies sell inclusive communities?," 21 June 2019 The process by which the Trump administration chose to go about withdrawal was quick, haphazard with regard to U.S. allies’ interests, and fundamentally unstrategic. Ankit Panda, The New Republic, "Trump’s Reckless New Missile Race," 5 Aug. 2019 Surprise growth is planned, but haphazard Surprise is one the fastest-growing cities in Arizona. Riley Murdock, azcentral, "Development marches past the edge of metro Phoenix, swallowing ‘the nothingness, the openness, the freedom’," 22 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Aleksandr Golovin curled home a wonderful free-kick after haphazard defending from Shkodran Mustafi and Laurent Koscielny to level six minutes later. Afp, chicagotribune.com, "Europa League Recap: Arsenal rout CSKA, Atletico, RB Leipzig, Lazio take victories," 5 Apr. 2018 The system now is a haphazard, on-the-ground monitoring network used to track greenhouse gases. John Fialka, Scientific American, "Meet the Satellites that Can Pinpoint Methane and Carbon Dioxide Leaks," 9 Mar. 2018 Winfrey, who was first elected as city clerk in 2005, has come under fire multiple times over the years for running a haphazard and error-prone election process. Allie Gross, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit City Clerk announces new re-evaluation plan for all 3,000 election poll workers," 27 Feb. 2018

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

Adjective

1576, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1569, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for haphazard

Noun and Adjective

hap entry 1 + hazard

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Statistics for haphazard

Last Updated

9 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for haphazard

The first known use of haphazard was in 1569

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More Definitions for haphazard

haphazard

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of haphazard

: having no plan, order, or direction

haphazard

adjective
hap·​haz·​ard | \ hap-ˈha-zərd How to pronounce haphazard (audio) \

Kids Definition of haphazard

: marked by lack of plan, order, or direction We took a haphazard route.

Other Words from haphazard

haphazardly adverb

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