in·​dis·​pens·​able ˌin-di-ˈspen(t)-sə-bəl How to pronounce indispensable (audio)
: absolutely necessary : essential
an indispensable member of the staff
: not subject to being set aside or neglected
an indispensable obligation
indispensability noun
indispensable noun
indispensableness noun
indispensably adverb

Examples of indispensable in a Sentence

fully aware that he was an indispensable assistant, he decided that it was high time that he be paid what he was worth
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These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'indispensable.' 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

1653, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of indispensable was in 1653

Dictionary Entries Near indispensable

Cite this Entry

“Indispensable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


in·​dis·​pens·​able ˌin-dis-ˈpen(t)-sə-bəl How to pronounce indispensable (audio)
: absolutely necessary : essential
an indispensable employee
indispensability noun

Legal Definition


in·​dis·​pen·​sa·​ble ˌin-di-ˈspen-sə-bəl How to pronounce indispensable (audio)
: having rights so connected to the claims of the parties to an action that the action cannot be adjudicated without affecting those rights see also indispensable party at party

More from Merriam-Webster on indispensable

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