in·​ci·​vil·​i·​ty | \ ˌin(t)-sə-ˈvi-lə-tē How to pronounce incivility (audio) \

Definition of incivility

1 : the quality or state of being uncivil
2 : a rude or discourteous act

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Examples of incivility in a Sentence

We chose to ignore their little insults and incivilities. I won't tolerate incivility, and that includes text messaging while I'm speaking.

Recent Examples on the Web

Happiness seems to be in short supply today, with acrimony, incivility and bad behavior permeating society and the media from the highest echelons of government on down. Edith Hall, WSJ, "Aristotle’s Pursuit of Happiness," 31 Jan. 2019 The study, which reflects three surveys covering 1,340 male and female employees in the U.S. in a variety of occupations and industries, defined incivility as being ignored, interrupted, mocked or treated disrespectfully. Joann S. Lublin, WSJ, "Undermined at the Office? How Women Can Cope With Mistreatment From Female Colleagues," 22 Aug. 2018 One study found increased incivility at work had personal life implications, such as less marital satisfaction. William Wan,, "We often fight rudeness with rudeness. And it can be contagious, research shows," 27 June 2018 Surely the proposition that Mr. Trump has a monopoly on rudeness and incivility took a beating from the antics of Sen. Cory Booker. William Mcgurn, WSJ, "Playing the Civility Card," 10 Sep. 2018 Joining me now is Fox News contributor Mark Thiessen with a slightly different take on the recent incivility on the left. Fox News, "Watters' Words: The uncivil left," 1 July 2018 Moderates and conservatives mostly criticized the congresswoman's words as a step toward unprecedented incivility. Eugene Scott, Washington Post, "Before Trump warned that Maxine Waters had ‘called for harm,’ he told supporters he’d like to punch a protester," 25 June 2018 Supreme Court confirmation hearings for nominees of Republican presidents have become embarrassing and shameful spectacles of hypocrisy and incivility. WSJ, "Kavanaugh Brings Out the Swamp Creatures," 11 Sep. 2018 All this has saturated media with a sudden summer concern about America’s awful incivility., "A long tradition: Americans behaving badly," 5 July 2018

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

1584, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for incivility

Middle French incivilité, from Late Latin incivilitat-, incivilitas, from incivilis, from Latin in- + civilis civil

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Statistics for incivility

Last Updated

28 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for incivility

The first known use of incivility was in 1584

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More Definitions for incivility



English Language Learners Definition of incivility

: a rude or impolite attitude or behavior : lack of civility
: a rude or impolite act

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