in·​dul·​gent | \ in-ˈdəl-jənt How to pronounce indulgent (audio) \

Definition of indulgent

1 : willing to allow excessive leniency, generosity, or consideration : indulging or characterized by indulgence indulgent grandparents
2 : done or enjoyed as a special treat or pleasure indulgent desserts

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Other Words from indulgent

indulgently adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for indulgent



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Examples of indulgent in a Sentence

He gave the child an indulgent smile. she was perhaps a bit too indulgent with her children, who always seemed to get away with everything
Recent Examples on the Web Yes, football has its problems, but what's more indulgent, more American, than vegetating on the couch for four hours, gorging on queso and analyzing beer commercials with a bunch of your favorite people? Aj Willingham, CNN, "This party gives a new meaning to the word 'sportsmanship'," 1 Feb. 2020 Rest your head at Matachica Resort for an indulgent, adults-only stay on a true white sand beach (a rare find, since the island has an otherwise rocky shoreline). Ali Wunderman, Condé Nast Traveler, "Where to Find Belize's Adventurous Side, From Snorkeling to Hiking," 16 Jan. 2020 Where the Aviator feels indulgent and special, the XT6 doesn’t — a Cadillac problem for far too many years. Tribune News Service, cleveland, "The 2020 Cadillac XT6 is good, but not nearly good enough (auto review)," 11 Jan. 2020 Though the movie is a bit self-indulgent and could have been tightened up in the middle, its knockout third act delivers some of the most satisfying imagery of Tarantino’s career. Kyle Smith, National Review, "The Ten Best Films of 2019," 23 Dec. 2019 There are moments of loveliness in Tarantino’s portrait of his hometown, even as its willful rewriting of reality feels self-indulgent. Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, "Summer movies circa 2019: A season of random blips and nostalgia trips," 29 Aug. 2019 The three-cookie serving feels indulgent and satisfying but has just 6 grams (1 ½ teaspoons) of added sugar and 110 calories . Samantha Cassetty, NBC News, "Indulge your sweet tooth with these low-sugar desserts," 21 July 2019 The collector’s late husband, the affable lawyer Sherwin, was wryly indulgent of his wife’s collecting mania and auction extravagances. Vogue, "Eclectic Wonders: Inside the Costume Institute’s New Exhibition, “In Pursuit of Fashion: The Sandy Schreier Collection”," 25 Nov. 2019 Stuffing is unapologetically indulgent, so this is not the time to skimp on either fat. The New York Times News Service Syndicate, The Denver Post, "Small kitchen, big Thanksgiving," 18 Nov. 2019

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

1509, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for indulgent

Latin indulgent-, indulgens, present participle of indulgēre

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Time Traveler for indulgent

Time Traveler

The first known use of indulgent was in 1509

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Statistics for indulgent

Last Updated

23 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Indulgent.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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How to pronounce indulgent (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of indulgent

sometimes disapproving : willing to allow someone to have or enjoy something even though it may not be proper, healthy, appropriate, etc.
: done or enjoyed as a special pleasure


in·​dul·​gent | \ in-ˈdəl-jənt How to pronounce indulgent (audio) \

Kids Definition of indulgent

: feeling or showing a willingness to allow enjoyment of whatever is wanted : lenient indulgent parents

Other Words from indulgent

indulgently adverb

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