ig·​no·​rance | \ ˈig-n(ə-)rən(t)s How to pronounce ignorance (audio) \

Definition of ignorance

: the state or fact of being ignorant : lack of knowledge, education, or awareness

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Examples of ignorance in a Sentence

His racist attitudes were born out of ignorance. an appalling ignorance about other cultures
Recent Examples on the Web But the extent of public panic suggests a disturbing level of ignorance about how water is made available and what needs to be done to ensure adequate and reliable supplies. Mike Muller, Quartz Africa, "Mismanagement threatens water supply more than climate change in South Africa," 15 Nov. 2019 This state of ignorance is unfair to everyone involved and has made countless kids and parents miserable. Washington Post, "How listening to autistic adults helped me understand and support my son," 17 Oct. 2019 Why risk choking off donations to a children’s hospital over an adolescent display of ignorance no doubt intended for a then-tiny audience of friends? Eric Zorn, chicagotribune.com, "Column: ‘Cancel culture’ hits Iowa: Fundraising hero Carson King survives, a reporter falls — and you should delete your tweets," 1 Oct. 2019 That movie sanctifies ignorance, whereas Heller’s, equally gentle, explores not simplemindedness so much as simplicity, a rarer gift. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, "The Art of the Awkward Silence in “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”," 15 Nov. 2019 His ignorance-is-bliss approach to what the general public thinks about his play. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Matt Patricia keeps saying 'my bad' on Detroit Lions' defensive woes. So now what?," 5 Nov. 2019 Worse, ignorance compounded (and justified by) the squeamish silences around vulvas have made many of them complacent. Wired, "The Female Founders Disrupting the Vagina Economy," 29 Sep. 2019 While the two are primarily driven by the need to change Chinese stereotypes about Africa, their videos do also capture the ignorance about China and the stereotypes that Africans have about them too. Ciku Kimeria, Quartz Africa, "These Chinese vloggers are changing how China’s rising middle class sees Africa," 24 Sep. 2019 There also is much public ignorance of actual tariff levels before the trade war began. Edward Lotterman, Twin Cities, "Real World Economics: Time to explain the basics of trade," 15 Sep. 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for ignorance

Time Traveler

The first known use of ignorance was in the 13th century

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Statistics for ignorance

Last Updated

2 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Ignorance.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ignorance. Accessed 5 December 2019.

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More Definitions for ignorance


How to pronounce ignorance (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ignorance

: a lack of knowledge, understanding, or education : the state of being ignorant


ig·​no·​rance | \ ˈig-nə-rəns How to pronounce ignorance (audio) \

Kids Definition of ignorance

: a lack of knowledge, understanding, or education : the state of being ignorant

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