in·​ces·​tu·​ous | \ in-ˈses-chə-wəs How to pronounce incestuous (audio) , -ˈsesh- \

Definition of incestuous

1 : constituting or involving incest
2 : guilty of incest
3 : excessively or improperly intimate or exclusive "… mainstream fashion magazines have an incestuous relationship with advertisers, and that undermines integrity."— Ike Ude

Other Words from incestuous

incestuously adverb
incestuousness noun

Examples of incestuous in a Sentence

There were rumors that the father and daughter had had an incestuous relationship.
Recent Examples on the Web The Ripsticks ski like nothing else on the market: Elan is in Slovenia, away from the incestuous ski manufacturing of the Germanic and Franco countries. Marc Peruzzi, Outside Online, 9 Jan. 2022 Its focus: the mad, incestuous House Targaryen, brought to life by a cast that includes Matt Smith from The Crown, once again playing a member of a dysfunctional royal family. Alan Sepinwall, Rolling Stone, 27 Dec. 2021 Take it from this one-time automotive writer, the gags are there to be had, from lampooning the process of creating a new model's name to skewering the incestuous relationship between car magazines and auto companies. Marco Della Cava, USA TODAY, 14 Dec. 2021 One of the most notorious of all emperors, Caligula is said to have had an incestuous relationship with his sister, to have fed prisoners to wild beasts, and to have made his horse a consul. Nick Squires, The Christian Science Monitor, 29 Oct. 2021 Royal courts are always such an incestuous, hilarious place. Valentina Valentini, Vulture, 23 Nov. 2021 There is of course the Mormon polygamy exception, and criminal incestuous relationships. Peter J Reilly, Forbes, 1 Nov. 2021 The incestuous casting that exploits James Gandolfini’s actual son — as if The Sopranos saga was more than pop fiction but somehow real — is a gambit that can work only for moral idiots. Armond White, National Review, 6 Oct. 2021 Old Boys’ Club: an informal system by which money and power are retained by wealthy white men through incestuous business relationships. Laura Rittenhouse, Forbes, 28 Sep. 2021

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

1532, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of incestuous was in 1532

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Last Updated

19 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Incestuous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for incestuous



English Language Learners Definition of incestuous

: involving sexual intercourse between closely related people : involving incest


in·​ces·​tu·​ous | \ in-ˈses(h)-chə-wəs How to pronounce incestuous (audio) \

Medical Definition of incestuous

1 : constituting or involving incest
2 : of, relating to, or guilty of incest infantile incestuous wishes of the Oedipus complex

More from Merriam-Webster on incestuous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for incestuous

Nglish: Translation of incestuous for Spanish Speakers


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