in·​ex·​o·​ra·​ble | \ (ˌ)i-ˈneks-rə-bəl, -ˈnek-sə- How to pronounce inexorable (audio) , -ˈneg-zə-rə- How to pronounce inexorable (audio) \

Definition of inexorable

: not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped : relentless inexorable progress

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Other Words from inexorable

inexorability \ (ˌ)i-​ˌneks-​rə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē , -​ˌnek-​sə-​ How to pronounce inexorability (audio) , -​ˌneg-​zə-​ \ noun
inexorableness \ (ˌ)i-​ˈneks-​rə-​bəl-​nəs , -​ˈnek-​sə-​ How to pronounce inexorableness (audio) , -​ˈneg-​zə-​ \ noun
inexorably \ (ˌ)i-​ˈneks-​rə-​blē , -​ˈnek-​sə-​ How to pronounce inexorably (audio) , -​ˈneg-​zə-​rə-​ \ adverb

Did You Know?

The Latin antecedent of inexorable is inexorabilis, which is itself a combination of the prefix in-, meaning "not," plus exorabilis, meaning pliant or "capable of being moved by entreaty." It's a fitting etymology for inexorable. You can beseech and implore until you're blue in the face, but that won't have any effect on something that's inexorable. Inexorable has been a part of the English language since the 1500s. Originally, it was often applied to persons, or sometimes to personified things ("deaf and inexorable laws"). These days, it is usually applied to things, as in "inexorable monotony" or "an inexorable trend." In such cases, it essentially means "unyielding" or "inflexible."

Examples of inexorable in a Sentence

the inexorable rise of a political movement
Recent Examples on the Web None, so far, have succeeded in stemming Grundy’s inexorable decline. Eduardo Porter, New York Times, "Can a Coal Town Reinvent Itself?," 6 Dec. 2019 Instead of an inexorable march upward, the Great Lakes are expected to seesaw between extremes, according to the Post. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "High Waters in the Great Lakes Reveal Two Centuries-Old Shipwrecks," 30 Apr. 2020 Overworked company staff began a slow but inexorable process of eroding procedures—bypassing burdensome obligations (taking only a BaYaka man along on a mapping trip, for example) or ignoring technical problems with the equipment. Jerome Lewis, Scientific American, "How Sustainable Development Ravaged the Congo Basin," 26 Apr. 2020 There is something downright intoxicating about the two stars’ charisma, and their chemistry feels as inexorable as tectonic plates moving toward each other. New York Times, "What to Stream on Valentine’s Day," 13 Feb. 2020 Given how inexorable interaction-less attacks can be, there’s not a lot users can do to stop them once malicious messages or calls start pouring in. Lily Hay Newman, WIRED, "Hackers Can Break Into an iPhone Just by Sending a Text," 7 Aug. 2019 Already reeling from anxiety and uncertainty, this announcement from Clarence House suddenly brought home to the British the stakes for the future as COVID-19 continues its seemingly inexorable march around the globe. Maria Puente, USA TODAY, "Prince Charles' coronavirus diagnosis is a huge deal for Brits, the monarchy. Here's why.," 25 Mar. 2020 His skepticism about the scale of the public health threat, though, contrasts with growing warnings from officials and epidemiologists over the virus’s seemingly inexorable spread through the United States and other parts of the world. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, "The coronavirus is a stress test for the U.S. and E.U.," 10 Mar. 2020 Opinion polls this year had tracked Bernie’s inexorable rise and Mr. Biden’s decline. Daniel Henninger, WSJ, "Socialism Just Bombed," 4 Mar. 2020

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

1542, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for inexorable

Latin inexorabilis, from in- + exorabilis pliant, from exorare to prevail upon, from ex- + orare to speak — more at oration

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Time Traveler for inexorable

Time Traveler

The first known use of inexorable was in 1542

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Last Updated

25 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Inexorable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for inexorable


How to pronounce inexorable (audio) How to pronounce inexorable (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of inexorable

formal : not able to be stopped or changed


in·​ex·​o·​ra·​ble | \ i-ˈnek-sə-rə-bəl How to pronounce inexorable (audio) \

Kids Definition of inexorable

: relentless We cannot stop the inexorable passing of time.

Other Words from inexorable

inexorably \ -​blē \ adverb

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