in·​sin·​u·​a·​tion | \(ˌ)in-ˌsin-yə-ˈwā-shən, -yü-ˈā-\

Definition of insinuation 

1 : the act or process of insinuating

2 : something that is insinuated especially : a sly, subtle, and usually derogatory utterance

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Synonyms for insinuation


imputation, innuendo

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Examples of insinuation in a Sentence

I resent her insinuation that I can't do it without her help. He criticizes his opponents by insinuation rather than directly.

Recent Examples on the Web

Allegations and insinuations of Russian meddling clearly cost Mr. Trump some sizeable number of votes. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "Clapper Disinformation Campaign," 29 May 2018 Pashteen is quick to shrug off any insinuation that they are being funded by external groups. Sophia Saifi And Euan Mckirdy, CNN, "Manzoor Pashteen: The Pashtun folk hero making life difficult for Pakistan's ruling class," 11 May 2018 The insinuation, a not-uncommon one over the past two years, is that Putin might have some leverage over Trump. Philip Bump, Washington Post, "Why the Stormy Daniels agreement was a blackmail risk for Trump," 26 Mar. 2018 The pizza titan's fall comes after months of controversy, including an endorsement by white supremacists and an insinuation by Schnatter that the NFL mishandled protests around the national anthem. Louisville Courier Journal, The Courier-Journal, "Fallout over Papa John's N-word scandal: Here's what we know," 12 July 2018 Foster’s brother lashed out against that insinuation in 2016. Christina Tkacik,, "Who is Brett Kavanaugh? The Marylander might be Trump's next Supreme Court pick," 28 June 2018 There’s no evidence that McCabe leaked anything to CNN in this case, but the article’s insinuation isn’t subtle about the possibility. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "Anatomy of a Pro-Trump Conspiracy Theory," 22 May 2018 And Nunes’s insinuations were later proven to be false. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "4 GOP Senators Call for Second Special Counsel to Investigate FBI," 15 Mar. 2018 This is not an insinuation, but a way to express the admiration for an exceptional achievement. Joshua Robinson, WSJ, "Chris Froome’s Epic Giro d’Italia Makes for Uncomfortable Tour de France," 1 June 2018

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

1526, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for insinuation

The first known use of insinuation was in 1526

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English Language Learners Definition of insinuation

: a usually bad or insulting remark that is said in an indirect way

: the act of saying something bad or insulting in an indirect way

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Comments on insinuation

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


a private place of worship

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