in·​dif·​fer·​ence in-ˈdi-f(ə-)rən(t)s How to pronounce indifference (audio)
: the quality, state, or fact of being indifferent
: absence of compulsion to or toward one thing or another
archaic : lack of difference or distinction between two or more things

Examples of indifference in a Sentence

She was amazed that some people could watch the trial with indifference. She watched them with a cool indifference.
Recent Examples on the Web The hurt and anger between Prince William and Prince Harry, in particular, has now hardened into something colder and more immovable, said Scobie: indifference. Stephanie Petit, Peoplemag, 16 Feb. 2024 Johnson’s confession, a clip from an interview with Magic FM, is circulating on social media, with some interpreting her choice not to watch the movie as indifference. Malia Mendez, Los Angeles Times, 16 Feb. 2024 And in a case of involuntary manslaughter, the prosecution must prove the defendants showed reckless indifference to life or criminal negligence. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 15 Feb. 2024 His indifference to bourgeois society sometimes got him into trouble. Jordan Michael Smith, Smithsonian Magazine, 13 Feb. 2024 For Trump, the attraction of the trials, in an election characterized so far by general indifference, may be quite basic. Benjamin Wallace-Wells, The New Yorker, 21 Jan. 2024 But what bothered him the most was the indifference shown by the Black community over the broken promise. J.m. Banks, Kansas City Star, 7 Feb. 2024 Feelings in the creative community, which vary from indifference to outrage, largely depend on where and how one works. Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 31 Jan. 2024 Your indifference cost these men and women their most valuable commodity: time. Kalia Richardson, Rolling Stone, 27 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'indifference.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of indifference was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near indifference

Cite this Entry

“Indifference.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


in·​dif·​fer·​ence in-ˈdif-ərn(t)s How to pronounce indifference (audio)
: lack of feeling for or against something
: lack of importance
a matter of indifference to them

Medical Definition


in·​dif·​fer·​ence in-ˈdif-ərn(t)s, -ˈdif-(ə-)rən(t)s How to pronounce indifference (audio)
: the quality, state, or fact of being indifferent
a schizophrenic reaction accompanied by apathy and indifference

More from Merriam-Webster on indifference

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