interference

noun

in·​ter·​fer·​ence ˌin-tər-ˈfir-ən(t)s How to pronounce interference (audio)
ˌin-tə-
1
a
: the act or process of interfering
b
: something that interferes : obstruction
2
a
: the illegal hindering of an opponent in sports
b
: the legal blocking of an opponent in football to make way for the ballcarrier
3
a
: confusion of a received radio signal due to the presence of noise (such as atmospherics) or signals from two or more transmitters on a single frequency
b
: something that produces such confusion
4
: the mutual effect on meeting of two wave trains (as of light or sound) that constitutes alternating areas of increased and decreased amplitude (such as light and dark lines or louder and softer sound)
5
: partial or complete inhibition or sometimes facilitation of other genetic crossovers in the vicinity of a chromosomal locus where a preceding crossover has occurred
6
: the disturbing effect of new learning on the performance of previously learned behavior with which it is inconsistent
interferential
ˌin-tər-fə-ˈren(t)-shəl How to pronounce interference (audio)
ˌin-tə-
-ˌfir-ˈen(t)-
adjective

Example Sentences

We had to put up with loud noise and constant interference from the neighbors. interference in the affairs of another nation trying to avoid governmental interference It was hard to hear the radio program because of all the interference. The TV picture had a lot of interference. a hockey player receiving a penalty for interference See More
Recent Examples on the Web The score came about 3 minutes after Wisconsin won a challenge to wipe off an Ohio State goal due to goalie interference. Mark Stewart, Journal Sentinel, 22 Jan. 2023 Craig Smith committed interference in the neutral zone and while the Rangers were working with the extra attacker, a K’Andre Miller one-timer dropped Nosek with 59 seconds left in the frame. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 21 Jan. 2023 That violence was fueled by false election interference claims, mirroring attacks in the United States on January 6, 2021. Ashley Belanger, Ars Technica, 19 Jan. 2023 Adam Driver stars as Daniel Jones, the lead investigator who plowed an increasingly lonely path to the truth, battling against political resistance and CIA interference all the way. WIRED, 17 Jan. 2023 Latif Afridi, also a former lawmaker, had been a vocal critic of the powerful military’s alleged interference in Pakistani politics and of Islamist militancy. Tara Subramaniam, CNN, 17 Jan. 2023 In addition, a special grand jury investigating election interference in Georgia has submitted its report, which a judge will decide whether to make public and authorities will use to decide whether to bring charges. Isaac Arnsdorf, Washington Post, 14 Jan. 2023 Renner's Mike McLusky runs interference between the inmates, the guards, the cops and the criminals on the outside, keeping peace and putting himself in danger everyday. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, 13 Jan. 2023 The goaltender interference challenge was a critical moment. Phil Thompson, Chicago Tribune, 13 Jan. 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1783, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of interference was in 1783

Dictionary Entries Near interference

Cite this Entry

“Interference.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/interference. Accessed 5 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

interference

noun
in·​ter·​fer·​ence ˌint-ə(r)-ˈfir-ən(t)s How to pronounce interference (audio)
1
a
: the act or process of interfering
b
: something that interferes
2
: the shared effect on meeting of two waves (as of light or sound) whereby the waves cancel each other at some points and strengthen each other at other points
3
a
: the act of legally blocking an opponent in football
b
: the act of illegally getting in the way of an opponent in sports
4
a
: confusion of received radio signals due to undesired signals
b
: something that produces such confusion

Medical Definition

interference

noun
in·​ter·​fer·​ence -ˈfir-ən(t)s How to pronounce interference (audio)
1
: the act or process of interfering
2
: the mutual effect on meeting of two wave trains (as of light or sound) that constitutes alternating areas of increased and decreased amplitude (as light and dark lines or louder and softer sound)
3
: partial or complete inhibition or sometimes facilitation of other genetic crossovers in the vicinity of a chromosomal locus where a preceding crossover has occurred
4
: the disturbing effect of new learning on the performance of previously learned behavior with which it is inconsistent compare negative transfer
5
: prevention of typical growth and development of a virus in a suitable host by the presence of another virus in the same host individual see interference phenomenon

Legal Definition

interference

noun
in·​ter·​fer·​ence
1
a
: the act or an instance of interfering
interference with contract
b
: something that interferes
2
: a hearing to determine the priority of invention at issue in a patent dispute

More from Merriam-Webster on interference

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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


Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
Name That Thing

You know what it looks like… but what is it called?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?

PLAY