in·​dis·​tinct | \ ˌin-di-ˈstiŋ(k)t How to pronounce indistinct (audio) \

Definition of indistinct

: not distinct: such as
a : not sharply outlined or separable : blurred indistinct figures in the fog
b : faint, dim an indistinct light in the distance
c : not clearly recognizable or understandable : uncertain

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Other Words from indistinct

indistinctly \ ˌin-​di-​ˈstiŋ(k)t-​lē How to pronounce indistinct (audio) , -​ˈstiŋ-​klē \ adverb
indistinctness \ ˌin-​di-​ˈstiŋ(k)t-​nəs How to pronounce indistinct (audio) , -​ˈstiŋk-​nəs \ noun

Examples of indistinct in a Sentence

indistinct figures in the fog managed to discern a blurry, indistinct shadow through the downpour
Recent Examples on the Web But on Wall Street and in Washington, attention is shifting to an intriguing if indistinct prospect: a post-Covid boom. New York Times, "On the Post-Pandemic Horizon, Could That Be … a Boom?," 21 Feb. 2021 The twins’ words are drawn out into indistinct cries for a relationship that has forked with time. Billboard Staff, Billboard, "The 25 Best LGBTQ Songs of 2020: Staff Picks," 10 Dec. 2020 There was a snapshot of the boy, his face indistinct in the engraving dots, a blond eighteen-year-old sitting on a rock and smiling. Joan Didion, Harper's Magazine, "Fathers, Sons, Screaming Eagles," 24 Nov. 2020 Yet as Tenold points out, violence between the combatants is now so routine that the shooting and deaths are becoming an indistinct, but disturbing backdrop for ordinary politics. Bryan Denson, ProPublica, "When the Political Divide Turned Deadly in Portland," 5 Nov. 2020 The video rearview system worked well in daylight but was predictably grainy and indistinct at night. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, "2020 Honda e Does Fun Better than Most EVs," 3 Nov. 2020 Next to my dad was a photograph of another pilot—a handsome young man with red hair, whose identity was then, from my perspective, indistinct. Ed Caesar, The New Yorker, "A Pilot’s Son Takes Flight," 17 Oct. 2020 After that, the work is generally agreed to have become indistinct and undistinguished. Kathryn Hughes, The New York Review of Books, "Bliss in That Dawn," 8 Sep. 2020 An indistinct hum came from somewhere, as indicators and switchgear lighted. Dan Neil, WSJ, "Electric Trash Trucks Are Coming Quietly to Your Town," 7 Oct. 2020

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

1526, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for indistinct

Latin indistinctus, from in- + distinctus distinct

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Time Traveler for indistinct

Time Traveler

The first known use of indistinct was in 1526

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Statistics for indistinct

Last Updated

26 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Indistinct.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for indistinct



English Language Learners Definition of indistinct

: not easily seen, heard, or recognized : not distinct or clear


in·​dis·​tinct | \ ˌin-di-ˈstiŋt How to pronounce indistinct (audio) \

Kids Definition of indistinct

: not easily seen, heard, or recognized indistinct voices

Other Words from indistinct

indistinctly adverb

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Comments on indistinct

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