im·​per·​ti·​nence | \ (ˌ)im-ˈpər-tə-nən(t)s How to pronounce impertinence (audio) , -ˈpərt-nən(t)s \

Definition of impertinence

1 : the quality or state of being impertinent: such as
2 : an instance of impertinence

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Examples of impertinence in a Sentence

a disciplinarian of the old school, he refused to tolerate any impertinence from his children the impertinence of deliberately ignoring waiting customers while they finished their conversation
Recent Examples on the Web In less hectic times censors would swiftly stamp out such impertinence. The Economist, "Chaguan Xi Jinping wants to be both feared and loved by China’s people," 30 Jan. 2020 Somehow, Arnautoff’s impertinence was overlooked at the time. Kevin Baker, Harper's magazine, "Whiteout," 28 Oct. 2019 Nike compounded their impertinence by announcing withdrawal of production for facile reasoning that it could be seen as racist symbol. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Econometer: Did Nike make the right move recalling Betsy Ross shoes?," 12 July 2019 By his late 30s, the same piercing humor and cool impertinence that had marked his ascent up the social ladder also marked his descent into disgrace. Ignacio Peyró, National Geographic, "This 19th-century London dandy caused a style revolution," 18 June 2019 Carrie Compere also impresses mightily as Sofia, badly beaten for her perceived impertinence. Tom Titus,, "On Theater: Strong singing propels 'The Color Purple'," 21 June 2018 Connecting with the spirit world, however, explores the impertinence of the physical realm. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "A Beginner’s Guide to Communicating With Spirits on the Other Side," 19 June 2018 Yet for all of the annoyance at the apparent impertinence of my visit, I was struck by the way the identity politics raised by Hérouxville still resonate. Dan Bilefsky, New York Times, "Don’t Burn Women: Warning to Immigrants Looms Over a Quebec Village," 12 Apr. 2018 Stephen's fearlessness, combined with his charming impertinence, was vital to his success as a scientist, and as an individual. Anchorage Daily News, "The time I took Stephen Hawking to a cowboy bar," 16 Mar. 2018

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

1582, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for impertinence

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The first known use of impertinence was in 1582

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Cite this Entry

“Impertinence.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for impertinence


im·​per·​ti·​nence | \ im-ˈpər-tə-nəns How to pronounce impertinence (audio) \

Kids Definition of impertinence

: the quality or state of being very rude or disrespectful

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