in·​tol·​er·​ant | \ (ˌ)in-ˈtäl-rənt How to pronounce intolerant (audio) , -ˈtä-lə- \

Definition of intolerant

1 : unable or unwilling to endure
2a : unwilling to grant equal freedom of expression especially in religious matters
b : unwilling to grant or share social, political, or professional rights : bigoted
3 : exhibiting physiological intolerance lactose intolerant

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Other Words from intolerant

intolerantly adverb
intolerantness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for intolerant



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Examples of intolerant in a Sentence

intolerant of fools, she is not an easy person to work for intolerant people who callously deny others the very rights that they take for granted
Recent Examples on the Web We Fall argues that Americans have become so intolerant of each other’s views, and so entrenched at illiberal extremes, that secession is a realistic possibility. Emily Chamlee-wright, Forbes, "Professors Are Demanding Their Academic Freedom (And That’s A Good Thing For The Rest Of Us)," 16 Apr. 2021 The company also produces nondairy cream cheese and other foods appealing to vegans, people who are lactose intolerant and those with religious eating restrictions. James R. Hagerty, WSJ, "David Mintz Turned Tofu Into a Nondairy Ice Cream," 9 Mar. 2021 Critics say India under Mr. Modi is growing intolerant. Sheikh Saaliq And Krutika Pathi, The Christian Science Monitor, "Amid protests, a 'chilling development for the press' in India," 5 Feb. 2021 Lawyers for the Philadelphia Archdiocese devoted much of its effort to portraying the city and its officials as rigid and intolerant. David G. Savage, Los Angeles Times, "Supreme Court conservatives may reset balance between LGBTQ rights and religious liberty," 13 Apr. 2021 Unlike in many other countries with troubled intolerant pasts, Germany has not seen a state-threatening resurgence of rightwing (or left-wing) political violence since 1945. Robert Hockett, Forbes, "The Golden Rule Of A ‘Fighting Democracy’ - Don’t Tolerate Intolerance," 7 Apr. 2021 For weeks, protesters have arrived every Sunday to decry the sale of the Tower Theater to an evangelical church that some perceive as intolerant of the gay community. Lila Seidman, Los Angeles Times, "Fresno police officer on leave after alleged involvement with far-right Proud Boys," 16 Mar. 2021 Second, because the Mann suit partakes of the deeply intolerant impulse in contemporary progressivism, which believes silencing its opponents is better than debating or competing with them in the intellectual and political arena. Rich Lowry, National Review, "Millions . . . and Counting," 8 Mar. 2021 Being tolerant or intolerant is a matter of disposition rather than of principle. Ramesh Ponnuru, Star Tribune, "Tanden's fall: common sense meets cancel culture," 4 Mar. 2021

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

circa 1735, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for intolerant

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The first known use of intolerant was circa 1735

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Statistics for intolerant

Last Updated

2 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Intolerant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for intolerant



English Language Learners Definition of intolerant

: not willing to allow or accept something
disapproving : not willing to allow some people to have equality, freedom, or other social rights
medicine : unable to take a certain substance into the body without becoming sick


in·​tol·​er·​ant | \ in-ˈtä-lə-rənt How to pronounce intolerant (audio) \

Kids Definition of intolerant

1 : not able or willing to put up with She was intolerant of failure.
2 : not willing to grant rights to some people an intolerant government


in·​tol·​er·​ant | \ (ˈ)in-ˈtäl(-ə)-rənt \

Medical Definition of intolerant

: exhibiting physiological intolerance : unable to properly metabolize or absorb a substance People who are lactose intolerant cannot digest lactose because their small intestines do not produce enough lactase, the enzyme that breaks lactose down …— Jeffrey Steingarten, Vogue, March 1997

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Nglish: Translation of intolerant for Spanish Speakers

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