in·​de·​cen·​cy | \ (ˌ)in-ˈdē-sᵊn(t)-sē \

Definition of indecency

1 : the quality or state of being indecent
2 : something (such as a word or action) that is indecent

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Examples of indecency in a Sentence

The book has been criticized for indecency. I was shocked by the indecency of their language. He was accused of sexual indecencies.
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Recent Examples on the Web

He was later charged with trespassing, public intoxication and public indecency. Madeline Farber, Fox News, "Tennessee man does naked jumping jacks in McDonald's women's restroom, later arrested: police," 28 July 2018 Fanny and his partner in cross-dressing, Ernest Bolton (known as Stella) were indeed sent to the courts for gross indecency but ultimately cleared of wrongdoing, to the delight of the crowds. Hamish Bowles, Vogue, "The Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Presents “Camp: Notes on Fashion” For Its Spring 2019 Exhibition," 9 Oct. 2018 After an initial investigation, detectives arrested Delgado on the indecency with a child charge May 14. Jay R. Jordan, Houston Chronicle, "Houston man accused of paying to have sex with 16-year-old girl," 21 May 2018 The man was cited for public indecency and for marijuana possession. Jeff Piorkowski/special To,, "Woman, 79, causes crash, is arrested for drunk driving: Beachwood police blotter," 13 Mar. 2018 Sutter allegedly admitted to committing indecency with a child during interviews with investigators, according to the news release. Dana Burke, Houston Chronicle, "Mentor accused of indecency with a child at Fort Bend County juvenile detention facility," 23 May 2018 The novels are prickled like a sea urchin with the spines and fuzz of many indecencies. New York Times, "Philip Roth, a Born Spellbinder and Peerless Chronicler of Sex and Death," 23 May 2018 He was convicted of misdemeanor public indecency in 2002. Justin L. Mack, Indianapolis Star, "Curtis Hill and 13 other Indiana politicians caught in alleged sexual misconduct controversies," 3 July 2018 Andrew Miller Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles Commissioner Andrew Miller resigned in 2010 after his arrest in a public indecency sting in a Downtown Indianapolis restroom. Justin L. Mack, Indianapolis Star, "Curtis Hill and 13 other Indiana politicians caught in alleged sexual misconduct controversies," 3 July 2018

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

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for indecency

Last Updated

16 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for indecency

The first known use of indecency was in 1589

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More Definitions for indecency



English Language Learners Definition of indecency

: a morally or sexually offensive quality : an indecent quality

: behavior that is morally or sexually offensive : indecent behavior


in·​de·​cen·​cy | \ in-ˈdē-sᵊn-sē \
plural indecencies

Kids Definition of indecency

1 : offensive quality : lack of decency
2 : an act or word that is offensive

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Comments on indecency

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someone who never drinks alcohol

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