in·​ad·​ver·​tence | \ ˌi-nəd-ˈvər-tᵊn(t)s How to pronounce inadvertence (audio) \

Definition of inadvertence

1 : the fact or action of being inadvertent
2 : a result of inattention : oversight

Examples of inadvertence in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As for inventions, accident and inadvertence played a role in the development of Post-it Notes and microwave heating. Amanda Foreman, WSJ, 4 May 2018 The history of the game proceeded through intelligence, but also through inadvertence. Jay Caspian Kang, New York Times, 28 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inadvertence.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of inadvertence

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for inadvertence

Middle English, from Medieval Latin inadvertentia, from Latin in- + advertent-, advertens, present participle of advertere to advert

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Time Traveler for inadvertence

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The first known use of inadvertence was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Inadvertence.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for inadvertence


in·​ad·​ver·​tence | \ ˌin-əd-ˈvərt-ᵊns How to pronounce inadvertence (audio) \

Legal Definition of inadvertence

: an accidental oversight (as failing to sign a form)

More from Merriam-Webster on inadvertence

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inadvertence


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