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 One of the reasons for the incivility and rancor in this country is that people do not trust the media to report without an agenda. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: Civil unrest, Trump's comments on veterans," 8 Sep. 2020 However, the most egregious act of incivility came from a red truck that pushed itself into the middle of the procession and laid on its horn for minutes on end. Luther Ray Abel, National Review, "On the Ground at Trump’s Wisconsin Rally," 19 Aug. 2020 Yet, in recent investigations of post-civil rights era protests (from Watts in 1992 to Baltimore in 2015), researchers found that media coverage continues to reinforce stereotypes of black incivility and to denigrate the legitimacy of black outrage. Sarah J. Jackson, The Atlantic, "The Headlines That Are Covering Up Police Violence," 3 June 2020 Science has determined that both incivility and kindness are contagious. Donna Cameron, Washington Post, "Have different politics than your family? Here’s how to survive Thanksgiving.," 25 Nov. 2019 Local media reports continue to portray banlieues as hotspots for incivility and the propagation of the coronavirus. Colette Davidson, The Christian Science Monitor, "Coronavirus lockdown stirs can-do spirit in France’s poor suburbs," 15 Apr. 2020 The big three are incivility, misinformation, and politics. Mirel Zaman,, "What It’s Like To Moderate Reddit’s Wildly Popular Coronavirus Forum," 16 Apr. 2020 With so much incivility, self-destructiveness and abuse in the world, positive messages like these may seem like a lifeline to many teenagers, especially those who are dealing with anxiety, depression and social oppression. Jacqueline Marino, Washington Post, "The BTS effect: Making peace with my teenager through K-pop," 28 Jan. 2020 Former Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, one of the more prominent Democrats on Wall Street, condemned Warren's incivility against the wealthy while taking a not-so-subtle shot at the controversy over her Native American ancestry and DNA test. NBC News, "High anxiety: Jittery Democrats fear their candidate won't beat Trump," 16 Nov. 2019

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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Time Traveler for incivility

Time Traveler

The first known use of incivility was in 1584

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Statistics for incivility

Last Updated

18 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Incivility.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Oct. 2020.

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How to pronounce incivility (audio)

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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