inner city


Definition of inner city

: the usually older, poorer, and more densely populated central section of a city

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Other Words from inner city

inner-city adjective

Examples of inner city in a Sentence

The mayor is trying to attract new businesses to the inner city.

Recent Examples on the Web

Asthma runs in my family, and growing up working-class in the inner city — pollution, roaches, and asbestos in public schools — didn’t help my lungs as a child. Mary Emily O'hara, Allure, "Why People With Asthma Can Benefit From Edibles," 20 Apr. 2019 The inner city lacks major avenues as found in Paris or Rome, giving the city its unique character. Greg Tepper, Town & Country, "How to Plan a Trip to Prague," 5 Oct. 2016 Gentrification and urban renewal have pushed low-income and people of color out of the inner city, out to the outer edges. Jill Filipovic, Harper's BAZAAR, "Your State-by-State Guide to Women Running in the Midterms," 31 Oct. 2018 These are programs formed to call a halt to the violence in inner cities that a misguided honor code has helped bring about. Joseph Epstein, WSJ, "‘Why Honor Matters’ Review: Taking Things Personally," 3 Aug. 2018 In other videos, the NRA seemed to push the idea that people who live in inner cities should arm themselves against gangs, not succumb to gun restrictions. Astead W. Herndon,, "Threatened by youth movement, NRA exploits racial divisions," 29 Mar. 2018 What’s your message to some people in inner cities — who live in mostly black and Latino neighborhoods — who experience gun violence on a daily basis but feel as if their voices are not heard. Kurtis Lee,, "Kris Brown, co-president of the Brady Campaign, talks gun control, student activists and Trump," 8 Mar. 2018 And don’t forget, the 1960s summit of the American middle class and shared prosperity also saw the persistent crisis of impoverished Appalachia and growing economic distress of inner cities. Jon Talton, The Seattle Times, "In America’s ‘geography of despair,’ how to help the left-behind places?," 21 Nov. 2018 What has to happen in Chicago, and not just inner cities. Fox News, "'Angel moms' weigh in on the immigration debate," 24 Aug. 2018

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

1958, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for inner city

Last Updated

1 May 2019

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Time Traveler for inner city

The first known use of inner city was in 1958

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More Definitions for inner city

inner city


English Language Learners Definition of inner city

: the central section of a large city where mostly poor people live

More from Merriam-Webster on inner city

Spanish Central: Translation of inner city Encyclopedia article about inner city

Comments on inner city

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


a strong desire or propensity

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