ir·​re·​spon·​si·​ble | \ ˌir-i-ˈspän(t)-sə-bəl How to pronounce irresponsible (audio) \

Definition of irresponsible

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not responsible: such as
a : lacking a sense of responsibility
b : said or done with no sense of responsibility irresponsible accusations
c : unable especially mentally or financially to bear responsibility
d : not answerable to higher authority an irresponsible dictatorship



Definition of irresponsible (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who is irresponsible

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Other Words from irresponsible


irresponsibility \ ˌir-​i-​ˌspän(t)-​sə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce irresponsibility (audio) \ noun
irresponsibleness \ ˌir-​i-​ˈspän(t)-​sə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce irresponsibleness (audio) \ noun
irresponsibly \ ˌir-​i-​ˈspän(t)-​sə-​blē How to pronounce irresponsibly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for irresponsible

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of irresponsible in a Sentence

Adjective He's too irresponsible to keep a job for more than a week. She made irresponsible comments that helped cause the riot. It would be irresponsible to ignore the threats.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Democrats say her comments, which included praising Donald Trump for his leadership in reissuing the drug, were irresponsible. Tanya A. Christian, Essence, "Trump Says He’s Considering Founding ‘New’ Historically Black College In Detroit," 22 May 2020 Wearing masks is a duty; people who don’t do it are irresponsible, heartless, not respectful. Tony Bravo,, "Mask the rage: How to talk to people who don’t wear face coverings," 16 May 2020 That is a horribly dangerous and irresponsible precedent to set. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Jeffersontown mayor rips Louisville police decision to cut school crossing guards," 25 July 2019 His dominance has been a point of contention for investors who believe Facebook has been irresponsible in the handling users’ personal data, and that Zuckerberg has not been held accountable. Kurt Wagner,, "Facebook Names Former Treasury Official to Key Board Role," 10 May 2020 In spite of the efforts of our officers, irresponsible and reckless behavior led to the death of a teenager. Justin L. Mack, Indianapolis Star, "IMPD targets illegal parties where virus may spread. One, some fear, ended a girl’s life.," 4 May 2020 But to act like flying will feel fairly normal fairly fast is irresponsible. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Southwest CEO Says It's Safe to Fly Again. Our Math Says It Isn't.," 4 May 2020 For anyone to compare anything in Ohio to Nazi Germany is irresponsible and offensive. Darrel Rowland,, "Wife of Ohio state senator compares Dr. Amy Acton statement with Nazi mandates," 23 Apr. 2020 However, irresponsible and malicious whistleblowing can attract unwarranted attention and impact stock prices and shareholder perception. Abhyuday Agarwal, Quartz India, "Everything you need to know about whistleblowing in India beyond Infosys," 30 Oct. 2019

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


1648, in the meaning defined above


1892, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for irresponsible

Time Traveler

The first known use of irresponsible was in 1648

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Statistics for irresponsible

Last Updated

2 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Irresponsible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for irresponsible


How to pronounce irresponsible (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of irresponsible

: not having or showing maturity or good judgment : not responsible


ir·​re·​spon·​si·​ble | \ ˌir-i-ˈspän-sə-bəl How to pronounce irresponsible (audio) \

Kids Definition of irresponsible

: having or showing little or no sense of responsibility You're too irresponsible for a pet.

Other Words from irresponsible

irresponsibly \ -​ˈspän-​sə-​blē \ adverb


ir·​re·​spon·​si·​ble | \ ˌir-i-ˈspän(t)-sə-bəl How to pronounce irresponsible (audio) \

Medical Definition of irresponsible

: not responsible : mentally inadequate to bear responsibility

Other Words from irresponsible

irresponsibility \ -​ˌspän(t)-​sə-​ˈbil-​ət-​ē How to pronounce irresponsibility (audio) \ noun, plural irresponsibilities

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