inert

play
adjective in·ert \i-ˈnərt\

Definition of inert

  1. 1 :  lacking the power to move

  2. 2 :  very slow to move or act :  sluggish

  3. 3 :  deficient in active properties; especially :  lacking a usual or anticipated chemical or biological action

inert

noun

inertly

adverb

inertness

noun

Examples of inert in a Sentence

  1. an inert and lifeless body

  2. How does he propose to stimulate the inert economy and create jobs?

Recent Examples of inert from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inert'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of inert

Latin inert-, iners unskilled, idle, from in- + art-, ars skill — more at arm


First Known Use: 1647

Synonym Discussion of inert

inactive, idle, inert, passive, supine mean not engaged in work or activity. inactive applies to anyone or anything not in action or in operation or at work. on inactive status as an astronaut inactive accounts idle applies to persons that are not busy or occupied or to their powers or their implements. workers were idle in the fields inert as applied to things implies powerlessness to move or to affect other things; as applied to persons it suggests an inherent or habitual indisposition to activity. inert ingredients in drugs an inert citizenry passive implies immobility or lack of normally expected response to an external force or influence and often suggests deliberate submissiveness or self-control. passive resistance supine applies only to persons and commonly implies abjectness or indolence. a supine willingness to play the fool

Other Chemical Engineering Terms


INERT Defined for English Language Learners

inert

play
adjective

Definition of inert for English Language Learners

  • : unable to move

  • : moving or acting very slowly

  • chemistry : not able to affect other chemicals when in contact with them : not chemically reactive


INERT Defined for Kids

inert

play
adjective in·ert \i-ˈnərt\

Definition of inert for Students

  1. :  unable or slow to move or react inert gas

inertness

noun

Medical Dictionary

inert

play
adjective in·ert \in-ˈərt\

Medical Definition of inert

  1. 1:  lacking the power to move

  2. 2:  deficient in active properties; especially :  lacking a usual or anticipated chemical or biological action an inert drug

inertness

noun


Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

a lively discussion

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • istock-refers-to-this-as-a-tumble-of-strawberries-which-sounded-pretty-nice-to-us
  • Which is a synonym of garner?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!