in·​con·​sis·​tent | \ ˌin-kən-ˈsi-stənt How to pronounce inconsistent (audio) \

Definition of inconsistent

: lacking consistency: such as
a : not compatible with another fact or claim inconsistent statements
b : containing incompatible elements an inconsistent argument
c : incoherent or illogical in thought or actions : changeable
d : not satisfiable by the same set of values for the unknowns inconsistent equations inconsistent inequalities

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Other Words from inconsistent

inconsistently adverb

Examples of inconsistent in a Sentence

Customers have been complaining about the inconsistent service they have received. The pain has been inconsistent. Her grades have been inconsistent this school year. Their descriptions of the accident were inconsistent. The results of the two experiments were inconsistent. The decision was inconsistent with the company's policy.
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Recent Examples on the Web Shanghai was inconsistent in a 3-2 win over Florida before Dallas’ match. Sean Collins, Dallas News, "Dallas Fuel defeat Chengdu Hunters 3-1, advance to May Melee semifinal duel against Shanghai Dragons," 7 May 2021 Advertising can be inconsistent and Twitter said last week that ad sales got off to a slow start in 2021 thanks in part to civil unrest in the U.S. and delayed public events, like Hollywood’s Academy Awards presentation. Kurt Wagner, Fortune, "Twitter acquires ad-free news reader Scroll in shift towards subscription products," 4 May 2021 But the Office of the Inspector General for the Social Security Administration has found in at least four reports that this oversight is inconsistent, resulting in young people’s savings being spent in ways that do not benefit them. Anchorage Daily News, "These foster youths say the state of Alaska pocketed thousands of dollars that belonged to them," 4 May 2021 And, in general, waste reporting has been inconsistent. NBC News, "CVS, Walgreens have wasted more Covid vaccine doses than most states combined," 3 May 2021 And, in general, waste reporting has been inconsistent. ABC News, "CVS, Walgreens waste more COVID vaccine than most states combined, data shows," 3 May 2021 Powers has been inconsistent at guard — hence Cleveland’s arrival. Jonas Shaffer,, "Winners and losers from the Ravens’ 2021 NFL draft: Lamar Jackson gets help, 2019 class gets a push," 3 May 2021 Henry Garrido, executive director of District Council 37, New York City’s largest public employee union, said the city’s reopening approach has been inconsistent. Joseph De Avila, WSJ, "New York, New Jersey Lift Covid-19 Capacity Limits on Businesses," 3 May 2021 Quarterback Kyler Murray was inconsistent last season but is entering his third year and has started every game of the past two years. Ann Killion, San Francisco Chronicle, "With Trey Lance, all looks perfect for 49ers. They must brace for what's next," 1 May 2021

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

1620, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for inconsistent

Time Traveler

The first known use of inconsistent was in 1620

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Statistics for inconsistent

Last Updated

10 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Inconsistent.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for inconsistent



English Language Learners Definition of inconsistent

: not always acting or behaving in the same way
: not continuing to happen or develop in the same way
: having parts that disagree with each other : not in agreement with something


in·​con·​sis·​tent | \ ˌin-kən-ˈsi-stənt How to pronounce inconsistent (audio) \

Kids Definition of inconsistent

1 : not being in agreement Their stories are inconsistent.
2 : not staying the same in thoughts or practices His scores are inconsistent.

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