in·​car·​cer·​at·​ed in-ˈkär-sə-ˌrā-təd How to pronounce incarcerated (audio)
: confined in a jail or prison
Michigan law allows convicted felons to vote and run for office unless they are currently incarcerated, or if their offenses are fraud-related or constitute a breach of public trust.The Hartford (Connecticut) Courant
… whatever was needed for her programs combating domestic violence and aiding incarcerated women, ex-offenders, and their children.Peter Steinfels
Comparing the responses of incarcerated boys with nondelinquent adolescents, Scarpitti (1980) describes the three most probable identity resolutions …Judith Steven-Long et al.
medical, of a hernia : constricted but not strangulated
Within the incarcerated, herniated gastric cardia, there was an acute, benign gastric ulcer.Gregory J. Gallivan

Examples of incarcerated in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The jail system’s most severe problems are at Rikers Island, where neglect, mismanagement and the pandemic have created a dangerous, chaotic environment for the incarcerated and correction officers. New York Times, 8 Nov. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'incarcerated.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1766, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of incarcerated was in 1766

Dictionary Entries Near incarcerated

Cite this Entry

“Incarcerated.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2023.

Medical Definition


in·​car·​cer·​at·​ed in-ˈkär-sə-ˌrāt-əd How to pronounce incarcerated (audio)
of a hernia
: constricted but not strangulated

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