hyp·​o·​crit·​i·​cal | \ ˌhi-pə-ˈkri-ti-kəl How to pronounce hypocritical (audio) \

Definition of hypocritical

: characterized by behavior that contradicts what one claims to believe or feel : characterized by hypocrisy said that it was hypocritical to demand respect from students without respecting them in return a hypocritical gesture of modesty and virtue— Robert Graves also : being a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings : being a hypocrite

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Other Words from hypocritical

hypocritically \ ˌhi-​pə-​ˈkri-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce hypocritically (audio) \ adverb

Examples of hypocritical in a Sentence

it's hypocritical to say mean things behind someone's back, and then to act nice when you want something from her

Recent Examples on the Web

This is just more hypocritical intolerance from those who oppose her husband’s administration. Celeste Katz, Glamour, "Team Melania Trump: Congressional Candidate's 'Hoebag' Insults Are 'Despicable'," 1 Aug. 2018 For someone who believes in robots' right to freedom, this feels more than a little hypocritical. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "'Westworld' *Finally* Showed Us Shogun World and Revealed That Maeve Is Basically God Now," 21 May 2018 Some view the company as hypocritical for burdening taxpayers with the lion’s share of the cleanup bill, given the family’s reputation as fiscal conservatives and critical of government spending. Bradford Betz, Fox News, "Cleanups at Pence family's failed gas stations costing taxpayers millions: report," 14 July 2018 But some student victims of the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla., where 17 people were killed Feb. 14, criticized the policy as hypocritical. Molly Hennessy-fiske, latimes.com, "No guns but plenty of protesters expected when Trump addresses NRA convention," 30 Apr. 2018 Second, Lake said, Republicans may be trying to appeal to late-deciding voters who care more about character than issues by painting their Democratic opponents as untrustworthy or hypocritical. Anna North, Vox, "How Republicans are using the language of #MeToo against Democrats," 24 Oct. 2018 Nobody could agree whether the Cowboys were complicit, purposefully lukewarm, or downright hypocritical. refinery29.com, "How Charlotte Jones Anderson Became The NFL's "Ivanka Trump"," 15 June 2018 The hypocritical words that come from him tell me nothing. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "Pittsburgh Jewish Leaders to President Trump: Unless You Denounce White Nationalism, You're Not Welcome Here," 29 Oct. 2018 Not long after the reports surfaced, however, reporter Dave Levinthal discovered that, in a bizarre and objectively hypocritical turn of events, Trump's official website is still selling a pro-LGBTQ T-shirt in its online store. Andrea Park, Teen Vogue, "Donald Trump Is Still Selling a LGBTQ Pride Shirt Despite Anti-Transgender Policy," 22 Oct. 2018

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

1553, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hypocritical

hypocritic "of a hypocrite" (borrowed from Medieval Latin hypocriticus, borrowed from Greek hypokritikós "of acting, skilled in rhetorical delivery," from hypokritḗs "answerer, actor on a stage" + -ikos -ic entry 1) + -al entry 1 — more at hypocrite

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Statistics for hypocritical

Last Updated

7 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for hypocritical

The first known use of hypocritical was in 1553

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Comments on hypocritical

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


an act or instance of returning to life

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