in·​iq·​ui·​ty | \ i-ˈni-kwə-tē How to pronounce iniquity (audio) \
plural iniquities

Definition of iniquity

1 : gross injustice : wickedness
2 : a wicked act or thing : sin

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of iniquity in a Sentence

the use of illegal narcotics is not only a destroyer of personal health but also an iniquity that undermines our society a nation still struggling with the aftereffects of the iniquity of slavery
Recent Examples on the Web This is the way of this world in the day of that other’s; make yourselves friends by means of the riches of iniquity, for the wealth of the self is the health of the self exchanged. Cameron Hilditch, National Review, 3 July 2021 But those looking for such dens of iniquity in China will be looking for a long, long time. Stacey Anderson, Rolling Stone, 24 June 2021 Miraculously, the story grants an exemption to the virtuous white elites who have taken on black people as their moral wards—whites who preen and shake their fists and lament the iniquity, inequity and shame of it all. Lance Morrow, WSJ, 16 May 2021 Many of the cases Vance moved to dismiss dated to the 1970s and 1980s, when New York waged a war against prostitution in an effort to clean up its image as a center of iniquity and vice., 21 Apr. 2021 In 2021, by contrast, the past — that seemingly inexhaustible reservoir of knowledge, culture and human achievement — is too often portrayed as little better than a vile sink of iniquity. Washington Post, 21 Apr. 2021 New limited series Black Narcissus (airing in the UK on BBC One) will follow one convent’s intense struggle to maintain its sanctitude amidst a community that tests it devotion to God, carefully toeing the line between piety and iniquity. Ineye Komonibo,, 23 Sep. 2020 The question then was: Where would people go for their fix of iniquity? Mike Scott,, 15 Sep. 2020 The house long has been typecast as a den of iniquity, a fantasy hideout for rappers like Snoop Dogg and G-Eazy in their music videos or pornographer Jackie Treehorn in The Big Lebowski. Gary Baum, The Hollywood Reporter, 12 Mar. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of iniquity

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for iniquity

Middle English iniquite, from Anglo-French iniquité, from Latin iniquitat-, iniquitas, from iniquus uneven, from in- + aequus equal

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About iniquity

Time Traveler for iniquity

Time Traveler

The first known use of iniquity was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near iniquity




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for iniquity

Cite this Entry

“Iniquity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for iniquity



English Language Learners Definition of iniquity

: the quality of being unfair or evil
: something that is unfair or evil


in·​iq·​ui·​ty | \ i-ˈnik-wə-tē How to pronounce iniquity (audio) \
plural iniquities

Kids Definition of iniquity

: an evil or unfair act

More from Merriam-Webster on iniquity

Nglish: Translation of iniquity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of iniquity for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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