in·​dig·​na·​tion | \ ˌin-dig-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce indignation (audio) \

Definition of indignation

: anger aroused by something unjust, unworthy, or mean

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Synonyms & Antonyms for indignation



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anger, ire, rage, fury, indignation, wrath mean an intense emotional state induced by displeasure. anger, the most general term, names the reaction but by itself does not convey cause or intensity. tried to hide his anger ire, more frequent in literary contexts, suggests an intense anger, often with an evident display of feeling. cheeks flushed with ire rage and fury suggest loss of self-control from violence of emotion. shook with rage could not contain his fury indignation stresses righteous anger at what one considers unfair, mean, or shameful. a comment that caused general indignation wrath is likely to suggest a desire or intent to punish or get revenge. I feared her wrath if I was discovered

Examples of indignation in a Sentence

I am eager to concede that in our cataclysmic world this is a little misfortune, arousing even in me only the kind of indignation that could be thoroughly vented in a long footnote somewhere. — Marilynne Robinson, The Death of Adam, (1998) 2005 It's good to bear the preceding in mind when trying to comprehend the indignation with which the East Coast establishment greets work that dares to be both funny and deadly serious in the same breath. — Tom Robbins, Harper's, September 2004 … in his reverie, while his wife swooped back and forth with sheets of last year's leaves and bundles of brisk directives, his brooding mind warmed his old indignation at not having been invited to that party given by his then recently forsaken inamorata. — John Updike, The Afterlife, 1994 The decision to close the factory has aroused the indignation of the townspeople. He adopted a tone of moral indignation.
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Recent Examples on the Web Others have noted the complaint’s unconventional use of a quote right at the start by early church leader Brigham Young and pointed to the bolded and italicized statements throughout that highlight a tone of indignation. The Salt Lake Tribune, "James Huntsman isn’t the first to sue the LDS Church for a tithing refund. Do any of them stand a chance?," 4 Apr. 2021 No, this time their righteous indignation is directed at the government, teachers and some pesky teenage girls who just happened to come from the other side of the border. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: They’re kids. Helping them doesn’t take anything away from yours, so don’t frame this as “us v. them”," 2 Apr. 2021 Students, staff and academics across the world are voicing their indignation after the University of St. Andrews in Scotland failed to renew the contract of the female director of its Institute for Gender Studies, part of its philosophy department. Megan Specia, New York Times, "Scottish University Draws Ire for Dismissing Female Gender Studies Lead," 15 Feb. 2021 For its part, the British press greeted the Oprah appearance with a predictable blend of titillated schadenfreude and bad-faith indignation. Matt Seaton, The New York Review of Books, "The Great Disenchantment: Harry, Meghan & the Monarchy," 9 Mar. 2021 Politicians are practiced at displaying righteous indignation. Washington Post, "Republicans have the power to vote in Barrett. Sen. Booker implored them to have grace.," 15 Oct. 2020 Roosevelt knew how to stoke the fires of moral indignation. Joseph Thorndike, Forbes, "FDR Tried To Stop A Capital Gains Tax Cut — And Failed," 9 Mar. 2021 Bay Area politicians on Saturday voiced grief and indignation — but little surprise — after what is now the second impeachment acquittal of former President Donald Trump. Megan Cassidy, San Francisco Chronicle, "'Tragic and sad': Bay Area lawmakers react to Trump's acquittal," 13 Feb. 2021 The outrage reached a fever pitch Thursday, with lawmakers expressing indignation that investors were prevented from adding to their bullish GameStop positions. Dallas News, "SEC says it’ll probe the GameStop Reddit revolt, as the video game retailer’s stock price soars again," 29 Jan. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for indignation

see indignant

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Time Traveler for indignation

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The first known use of indignation was in the 14th century

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Statistics for indignation

Last Updated

9 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Indignation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for indignation



English Language Learners Definition of indignation

: anger caused by something that is unfair or wrong


in·​dig·​na·​tion | \ ˌin-dig-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce indignation (audio) \

Kids Definition of indignation

: anger caused by something unjust or unworthy

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