in·​el·​e·​gant | \ (ˌ)i-ˈne-li-gənt How to pronounce inelegant (audio) \

Definition of inelegant

: lacking in refinement, grace, or good taste

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Other Words from inelegant

inelegantly adverb

Examples of inelegant in a Sentence

inelegant teens still learning how to act at formal events inelegant furniture that looked like it belonged in a budget motel

Recent Examples on the Web

Movies don’t need to be as sparse as the original Predator, but this version seems to pad on storylines just for the sake of having them, all cut together in a surprisingly inelegant way. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "The Predator could have been the franchise’s chance to finally have an identity," 8 Sep. 2018 James spread 35 points, 15 rebounds and 9 assists across 48 minutes of an inelegant but compelling war of inept 3-point shooting and attrition. New York Times, "Look Who Answered LeBron’s Call: Jeff Green, the Former Celtic," 28 May 2018 In San Francisco, where it is widely supposed that conservatives are full of excrement, many locals remain oblivious to their town’s hyper-conservative streak even as folks protesting scooters adopt the inelegant tactic of defecating on them. Conor Friedersdorf, The Atlantic, "Fly On, My Sleek Electric Bird," 30 May 2018 The asteroid has the inelegant name of 2015 BZ509, indicating the year of its discovery. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, "Asteroid is first known 'permanent resident' from outside our solar system," 21 May 2018 In fact, this rehab stay was Robin and Susan’s understandably inelegant fix for a problem that had no solution. Dave Itzkoff, HWD, "Inside the Final Days of Robin Williams," 8 May 2018 The inelegant solution was to keep using census figures from 1971, an arrangement that became indefinite. The Economist, "Indian states squabble over how to share out federal cash," 12 Apr. 2018 During the first trial, Wyatt often held forth outside the courthouse with inelegant commentary. Eric Levenson, CNN, "Who's who in Bill Cosby's retrial," 8 Apr. 2018 Even when the romantic trio seem too aware of the laughs, watching them — particularly the wonderfully inelegant Ms. Khosh — is a delight. Maya Phillips, New York Times, "Review: A Bad Romance with Operatic Overtones in ‘Dido of Idaho’," 29 Mar. 2018

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

circa 1570, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for inelegant

Middle French, from Latin inelegant-, inelegans, from in- + elegant-, elegans elegant

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Time Traveler for inelegant

The first known use of inelegant was circa 1570

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English Language Learners Definition of inelegant

somewhat formal : not graceful, attractive, or polite : not elegant

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More from Merriam-Webster on inelegant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inelegant

Spanish Central: Translation of inelegant

Nglish: Translation of inelegant for Spanish Speakers

Comments on inelegant

What made you want to look up inelegant? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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