indelicate

play
adjective in·del·i·cate \ (ˌ)in-ˈde-li-kət \

Definition of indelicate

:not delicate:
a (1) :lacking in or offending against propriety :improper
(2) :verging on the indecent :coarse
b :marked by a lack of feeling for the sensibilities of others :tactless

indelicately

adverb

indelicateness

noun

Examples of indelicate in a Sentence

  1. Many consider it indelicate to talk about such things in mixed company.

  2. the company considered his indelicate handling of such a personal matter to be unprofessional

Recent Examples of indelicate from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'indelicate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of indelicate

1742

Synonym Discussion of indelicate

indecorous, improper, unseemly, unbecoming, indelicate mean not conforming to what is accepted as right, fitting, or in good taste. indecorous suggests a violation of accepted standards of good manners.
    • indecorous behavior
improper applies to a broader range of transgressions of rules not only of social behavior but of ethical practice or logical procedure or prescribed method.
    • improper use of campaign contributions
unseemly adds a suggestion of special inappropriateness to a situation or an offensiveness to good taste.
    • remarried with unseemly haste
unbecoming suggests behavior or language that does not suit one's character or status.
    • conduct unbecoming to an officer
indelicate implies a lack of modesty or of tact or of refined perception of feeling.
    • indelicate expressions for bodily functions

INDELICATE Defined for English Language Learners

indelicate

play
adjective

Definition of indelicate for English Language Learners

  • : not polite : having or showing bad manners or taste


INDELICATE Defined for Kids

indelicate

play
adjective in·del·i·cate \ in-ˈde-li-kət \

Definition of indelicate for Students

:not polite or proper :coarse
  • an indelicate subject

indelicately

adverb


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