in·​hu·​man·​i·​ty | \ ˌin-(ˌ)hyü-ˈma-nə-tē How to pronounce inhumanity (audio) , -(ˌ)yü- \
plural inhumanities

Definition of inhumanity

1a : the quality or state of being cruel or barbarous
b : a cruel or barbarous act
2 : absence of warmth or geniality : impersonality

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Examples of inhumanity in a Sentence

man's inhumanity to man has been a recurring theme in human history
Recent Examples on the Web But his presence in those scenes of abject inhumanity was no coincidence. Bob Greene, WSJ, "The Duty to Bear Witness to Brutality," 3 Apr. 2020 Who on earth could see all of this intolerance and inhumanity piling up and conclude the Trump administration is friendly to LGBT Americans?, "Hey Log Cabin Republicans, Trump is not your friend.," 22 Jan. 2020 The story of Assad's survival – and Syria's disintegration – is part personal inhumanity, part international indifference. Kim Hjelmgaard, USA TODAY, "Syria's war turns 9: How barbarity, confusion and indifference helped Bashar Assad prosper," 14 Mar. 2020 But there was also a focus on the callousness and inhumanity of Chinese culture, which allowed this epidemic to turn into a pandemic. Connie Wang,, "Closeness In The Age Of Coronavirus," 10 Feb. 2020 These pleasures—yes, authentically cinematic—are, however, secondary to the over-all tone that these movies convey: highly managed production to the point of inhumanity. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, "The Twenty-Seven Best Movies of the Decade," 27 Nov. 2019 Purdy’s book begins by discussing the inhumanity of ICE and ends by describing the misguided uselessness of the Department of Homeland Security as a jobs program. Will Meyer, Longreads, "A Green New Jail," 24 Oct. 2019 Watchmen observed, through the older Laurie on Sunday night, not only how history inevitably repeats itself, but also how characters have to grapple with the complex humanity—or inhumanity—of heroism. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, "Watchmen Questions Its Heroes’ Legacies," 4 Nov. 2019 But the callous, illogical inhumanity of the current policy is best summed up by Steven Camarota, director of research for the conservative Center for Immigration Studies. Peter Keough,, "Doc Talk: Outcasts, deportees, crustaceans, grants," 1 Aug. 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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The first known use of inhumanity was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

15 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Inhumanity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for inhumanity


How to pronounce inhumanity (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of inhumanity

: the quality or state of being cruel to other people or to animals


in·​hu·​man·​i·​ty | \ ˌin-hyü-ˈma-nə-tē How to pronounce inhumanity (audio) \
plural inhumanities

Kids Definition of inhumanity

: a cruel act or attitude He cannot understand man's inhumanity to man.

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More from Merriam-Webster on inhumanity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for inhumanity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with inhumanity

Spanish Central: Translation of inhumanity

Nglish: Translation of inhumanity for Spanish Speakers

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