ir·rev·o·ca·ble | \i-ˈre-və-kə-bəl, ˌi(r)-, sometimes ˌir-(r)ə-ˈvō-kə- \

Definition of irrevocable 

: not possible to revoke : unalterable an irrevocable decision

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Other Words from irrevocable

irrevocability \i-ˌre-və-kə-ˈbi-lə-tē, ˌir-(r)ə-ˌvō-kə- \ noun
irrevocableness \i-ˈre-və-kə-bəl-nəs, ˌir-(r)ə-ˈvō-kə- \ noun
irrevocably \i-ˈre-və-kə-blē, ˌi(r)-, sometimes ˌir-(r)ə-ˈvō-kə- \ adverb

Irrevocable and Trusts

Irrevocable has a formal sound to it and is often used in legal contexts. Irrevocable trusts are trust funds that cannot be dissolved by the people who created them (the other kind is a revocable trust). An irrevocable credit is an absolute obligation from a bank to provide credit to a customer. Irrevocable gifts, under U.S. tax law, are gifts that are given by one living person to another and can't be reclaimed by the giver. But the word isn't always legal; we've all had to make irrevocable decisions, decisions that commit us absolutely to something.

Examples of irrevocable in a Sentence

She has made an irrevocable decision.

Recent Examples on the Web

Season 2 of the series was particularly successful in mining the fear and paranoia of an America on the brink of irrevocable change. Lorraine Ali,, "Review: 'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 2 finale sets up a compelling new direction for the series," 11 July 2018 When LeBron James took his talents to South Beach, the damage to his image, and reputation at first seemed irrevocable. Nathaniel Friedman, GQ, "Kevin Durant Is in a Tricky Spot," 9 June 2018 Poland was grilled by its European Union colleagues over democratic values at an unprecedented hearing on Tuesday, just days before its latest court overhaul is set to make irrevocable changes to the justice system. Marek Strzelecki,, "EU Says Poland Must Do More to Quell Concern Over Court Revamps," 25 June 2018 These are ideas involving irrevocable choices, changes and that funny way that life has of making even great gains come with a loss. Mick Lasalle, Houston Chronicle, "Review: Nick Offerman and Kiersey Clemons in tune as dad-daughter songsters in ‘Hearts Beat Loud’," 20 June 2018 This year, in recognition of its 50th anniversary, the museum is celebrating the irrevocable impact these early images made on the field of portraiture at large. Ryan P. Smith, Smithsonian, "How Daguerreotype Photography Reflected a Changing America," 19 June 2018 Our daughters are joint trustees on our irrevocable life insurance trust., "Life-insurance trust requires estate-planning attention," 14 June 2018 Again, this offered an irrevocable upgrade to the corresponding unrestricted version after installation. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Latest Windows preview suggests you’ll be able to turn S Mode on and off," 7 June 2018 At each step, his opponents have had to choose between giving him one more slice of salami and staging an irrevocable breach. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "President Trump Is Taking Control of the Mueller Probe in Slices," 29 May 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for irrevocable

Middle English, from Latin irrevocabilis, from in- + revocabilis revocable

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Last Updated

2 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for irrevocable

The first known use of irrevocable was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for irrevocable



English Language Learners Definition of irrevocable

: not capable of being changed : impossible to revoke


ir·rev·o·ca·ble | \i-ˈre-və-kə-bəl \

Kids Definition of irrevocable

: impossible to take away or undo an irrevocable decision

Other Words from irrevocable

irrevocably \-blē \ adverb


ir·rev·o·ca·ble | \ir-ˈre-və-kə-bəl \

Legal Definition of irrevocable 

: not capable of being revoked the offer was irrevocable for ten days

Other Words from irrevocable

irrevocability noun
irrevocably adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on irrevocable

Spanish Central: Translation of irrevocable

Nglish: Translation of irrevocable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of irrevocable for Arabic Speakers

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