ir·​rel·​e·​vance | \ i-ˈre-lə-vən(t)s How to pronounce irrelevance (audio) \

Definition of irrelevance

1 : the quality or state of being irrelevant
2 : something irrelevant

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Examples of irrelevance in a Sentence

the irrelevance of the comment brought conversation to a standstill

Recent Examples on the Web

Taxpayers are funding the rush toward mediocrity and irrelevance. WSJ, "The Trouble With Grade Inflation Runs from A to D," 9 July 2018 For state Republicans, Denham’s defeat marked another setback in a state where the party has been drifting toward irrelevance for years. Michael R. Blood, The Seattle Times, "Democrat Harder upsets California GOP US Rep. Denham," 14 Nov. 2018 What the two cases really have in common is their deep irrelevance to fast-changing technology markets. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "At the Expense of U.S. Tech, a European Star Is Born," 27 July 2018 Even though the win is one of the sport’s oldest and most frequently cited stats, its significance has diminished almost to the point of irrelevance to baseball decision-makers in the age of sophisticated data. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Mets Are So Bad They Killed the Win," 7 Aug. 2018 The World Trade Organization is withering into irrelevance, its rules largely unchanged since the 1994 reform round. Karen J. Alter, Washington Post, "Trump’s tariffs aren’t the biggest trade problem. Will China step up to protect the WTO?," 18 June 2018 Given other polls suggesting that Marxism is popular among young people and the journey of socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders from fringe irrelevance to intellectual leader of the Democratic party, the latest results are perhaps barely reassuring. James Freeman, WSJ, "College Kids Not Endorsing Socialism, But They’re Open to It," 29 Oct. 2018 From Stephen Ross to Mike Tannenbaum and Chris Grier to Gase, is there a cogent, same-page plan to dislodge this franchise from two decades' irrelevance and lethargy? Greg Cote, miamiherald, "On a philosophical search to find the Miami Dolphins' grand plan, or see if there is one," 7 June 2018 But maybe the best indication of what kind of year this has been for the Red Sox is how quickly their alleged problems have faded into irrelevance. Brian Costa, WSJ, "Red Sox Concerns Fade as They Roll Into the World Series," 19 Oct. 2018

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

1843, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for irrelevance

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for irrelevance

The first known use of irrelevance was in 1843

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More Definitions for irrelevance


ir·​rel·​e·​vance | \ i-ˈre-lə-vəns How to pronounce irrelevance (audio) \

Kids Definition of irrelevance

: the quality or state of having no relation or importance to what is being considered


ir·​rel·​e·​vance | \ ir-ˈre-lə-vəns How to pronounce irrelevance (audio) \

Legal Definition of irrelevance

1 : the quality or state of being irrelevant
2 : something that is irrelevant

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More from Merriam-Webster on irrelevance

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for irrelevance

Spanish Central: Translation of irrelevance

Nglish: Translation of irrelevance for Spanish Speakers

Comments on irrelevance

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


one that collects or salvages junk

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