in·​apt | \ (ˌ)i-ˈnapt How to pronounce inapt (audio) \

Definition of inapt

: not apt:
a : not suitable an inapt analogy
b : inept

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Other Words from inapt

inaptly \ (ˌ)i-​ˈnap(t)-​lē How to pronounce inaptly (audio) \ adverb
inaptness \ (ˌ)i-​ˈnapt-​nəs How to pronounce inaptness (audio) \ noun

Examples of inapt in a Sentence

an inapt but well-meaning attempt to inject some humor into the proceedings a recruit who was utterly inapt for most soldierly duties, so he spent most of his time playing in the army band
Recent Examples on the Web Posner’s annotative antics can seem as inapt as a doctor goosing a patient on a gurney. Los Angeles Times, "Review: At the Getty Villa, Sophocles gets wounded in Aaron Posner’s revamp of ‘Philoctetes’," 6 Sep. 2019 Facebook is an especially inapt scapegoat for the besetting uncertainties of our age. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "The Scapegoating of Facebook," 20 Nov. 2018 To the few hundred American oddballs who draw funny pictures for a living, there’s never been a more hilariously inapt portrait of a cartoon professional than the one described above, inked by the great B. Kliban late in his career. Garry Trudeau, New York Times, "The Comic Strip’s Heyday in ‘Cartoon County’," 11 Dec. 2017 Ultimately, Kwok suggests, the Lego comparison may be inapt, partly because parts don’t always fit together well in cells and may integrate into them in unpredictable ways. Jacob Brogan, Slate Magazine, "What Exactly Is Synthetic Biology?," 3 Apr. 2017 Anyway, improbably enough, my garden box sits right in the center of the yard, like an unburied casket — not an entirely inapt metaphor considering my morbid agricultural past. Geoff Kirsch, Alaska Dispatch News, "Reflections from an improbable gardener in Juneau," 29 July 2017 It is filled with mayhem, but avoids grisly violence — at least until the finale pulls out some gory, and not inapt, punch lines. Glenn Kenny, New York Times, "Review: Brie Larson as a Gangster Wrangler in ‘Free Fire’," 20 Apr. 2017

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

circa 1670, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for inapt

Time Traveler

The first known use of inapt was circa 1670

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Cite this Entry

“Inapt.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 20 January 2020.

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More Definitions for inapt


How to pronounce inapt (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of inapt

somewhat formal : not appropriate or suitable : not apt

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More from Merriam-Webster on inapt

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inapt

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with inapt

Spanish Central: Translation of inapt

Nglish: Translation of inapt for Spanish Speakers

Comments on inapt

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


not to be intimidated or subdued

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