in·​dis·​crim·​i·​nate ˌin-di-ˈskri-mə-nət How to pronounce indiscriminate (audio)
: not marked by careful distinction : deficient in discrimination and discernment
indiscriminate reading habits
indiscriminate mass destruction
: haphazard, random
indiscriminate application of a law
: promiscuous, unrestrained
indiscriminate sexual behavior
: heterogeneous, motley
an indiscriminate collection
indiscriminately adverb
indiscriminateness noun

Examples of indiscriminate in a Sentence

They participated in the indiscriminate slaughter of countless innocent victims. He objects to the indiscriminate use of pesticides. She has been indiscriminate in choosing her friends.
Recent Examples on the Web The indiscriminate killing of civilians and hostage-taking, including children and the elderly, is reprehensible. Malaika Jabali, Essence, 20 Oct. 2023 Word that a New York museum held children’s toys from that day was a tangible reminder of the indiscriminate killing. Nicole Santa Cruz, ProPublica, 20 Oct. 2023 Both sides, in their indiscriminate killing of civilians, were committing others with abandon. Raja Shehadeh, The New York Review of Books, 10 Oct. 2023 The voices of those seeking peaceful outcomes by political means seem to be drowned out by those calling for revenge, punishment, and the use of indiscriminate force. Shivshankar Menon, Foreign Affairs, 16 Nov. 2023 Garner’s early reading tastes were indiscriminate; the library kept him well stocked. Alexandra Schwartz, The New Yorker, 12 Nov. 2023 The military, too, is accused of carrying out indiscriminate violence, including its relentless bombing of areas of the capital Khartoum held by the RSF. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 9 Nov. 2023 Discussions around the issue as part of the UN’s Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons—established in 1980 to create international rules around the use of weapons deemed to be excessive or indiscriminate in nature—have largely stalled. WIRED, 8 Nov. 2023 This is the way: to fight with restraint, to reject indiscriminate bombing and shelling, to respect enemy civilians (many, many Gazans are opposed to Hamas), and take necessary risks to reduce their risks, and finally to maintain a clear goal: defeat for Hamas. Jo-Ann Mort, The New Republic, 18 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'indiscriminate.' 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

circa 1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of indiscriminate was circa 1598

Dictionary Entries Near indiscriminate

Cite this Entry

“Indiscriminate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


in·​dis·​crim·​i·​nate ˌin-dis-ˈkrim-(ə-)nət How to pronounce indiscriminate (audio)
: showing lack of discrimination : not choosing carefully
an indiscriminate reader
indiscriminate enthusiasm
indiscriminately adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on indiscriminate

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