inan·​i·​ty | \ i-ˈna-nə-tē How to pronounce inanity (audio) \
plural inanities

Definition of inanity

1 : the quality or state of being inane: such as
a : vapid, pointless, or fatuous character : shallowness
b : lack of substance : emptiness
2 : something that is inane

Examples of inanity in a Sentence

quickly realized that her suggestion was an inanity and withdrew it the jaw-dropping inanity of the singer's comments on the awards show
Recent Examples on the Web Today critics continue to question some of the methods of the pollsters: their choice of population samples, their neutrality, sometimes the inanity of their questions. Joseph Epstein, WSJ, 26 Oct. 2021 The fact that the agency is not just a large organization, but a highly secretive, government organization, means that CIA officers are subjected to additional wrinkles of inanity. David Mccloskey, CNN, 11 Oct. 2021 The conceit established, Kasulke turns to more alluring tasks: cataloguing types of Slack users, parsing the app’s tonal shifts, and satirizing the inanity of office life. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, 23 Sep. 2021 The Dolphins escaped this particular inanity without giving up a point, but Waddle collected his punt muff, possessed the ball, tucked the ball and then had an elbow down before the ball came free again. Steve Svekis,, 19 Sep. 2021 But this is not the kind of show that deserves acclaim for its inanity. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, 8 July 2021 Clay Travis — formerly a right-wing sports-talk personality who has managed to parlay his particular brand of inanity into being one of the replacements for Rush Limbaugh — could not resist the opportunity. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, 18 June 2021 The latest poll on the Biden administration's pandemic rescue plan underscores the inanity of congressional Republicans' unified opposition. Arkansas Online, 6 Mar. 2021 But that does not make this inanity of this song forgivable. Steve Baltin, Forbes, 3 Mar. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of inanity

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Learn More About inanity

Time Traveler for inanity

Time Traveler

The first known use of inanity was in 1603

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near inanity



in annoyance

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for inanity

Last Updated

29 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Inanity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Nov. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on inanity

Nglish: Translation of inanity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of inanity for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!