lax

adjective
\ˈlaks \

Definition of lax 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a of the bowels : loose, open

b : having loose bowels

2 : deficient in firmness : not stringent lax control a lax foreman security has been lax

3a : not tense, firm, or rigid : slack a lax rope

b : having an open or loose texture a lax soil

c : having the constituents spread apart a lax flower cluster

4 : articulated with the muscles involved in a relatively relaxed state (such as the vowel \i\ in contrast with the vowel \ē\)

lax

noun

Definition of lax (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from lax

Adjective

laxation \ lak-​ˈsā-​shən \ noun
laxly \ ˈlaks-​lē \ adverb
laxness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for lax

Adjective

negligent, neglectful, lax, slack, remiss mean culpably careless or indicative of such carelessness. negligent implies inattention to one's duty or business. negligent about writing a note of thanks neglectful adds a more disapproving implication of laziness or deliberate inattention. a society callously neglectful of the poor lax implies a blameworthy lack of strictness, severity, or precision. a reporter lax about accurate quotation slack implies want of due or necessary diligence or care. slack workmanship remiss implies blameworthy carelessness shown in slackness, forgetfulness, or neglect. had been remiss in their familial duties

Examples of lax in a Sentence

Adjective

The university has been lax about enforcing these rules. lax parents who let their kids stay out as late as they want

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Trump has blamed the violence on lax immigration policies. Michael R. Sisak, Fox News, "Mother of suspected MS-13 victim remembered as 'warrior'," 21 Sep. 2018 Many ramblers are lax in their petal arrangements and their stems. Adrian Higgins, sacbee, "As for beauty and fragrance, the rambler comes up roses," 15 June 2018 Not that footwear is everything, but the NBA is decidedly more lax in its uniform regulations. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, "MLB cleat flap: As Ben Zobrist's peers lend support, uniform regulations may be loosened," 13 May 2018 Trump later challenged Khan to an IQ test during an interview on ITV and has since accused the mayor of lax counterterrorism and immigration policies. NBC News, "White House: Trump to make first trip to U.K. in July," 26 Apr. 2018 The president said other countries are taking advantage of lax U.S. trade policies, profiting at the expense of American workers. Mike Rogoway, OregonLive.com, "Trump's tariffs could have muted effect in Oregon, but trade war would be a real drag," 6 Mar. 2018 Despite receiving billions of dollars in taxpayer money, Medicaid insurers are lax in ferreting out fraud and neglect to tell states about unscrupulous medical providers, according to a federal report released Thursday. Chad Terhune, Washington Post, "Insurers Fall Short In Catching And Reporting Medicaid Fraud, Inspectors Find," 12 July 2018 The episode occurred months before the deadly Ghost Ship fire at an artists’ collective drew attention to the dangers of unpermitted residences and the city’s lax oversight of such properties. Kimberly Veklerov, SFChronicle.com, "Oakland finds likely collusion between inspector, property owner in eviction," 1 July 2018 Contentious and last-minute issues: Giving $550,000 to the Center for Closing the Health Gap: Mayor John Cranley opposed it because of a review that found lax oversight for the group. Sharon Coolidge, Cincinnati.com, "Cincinnati's 2019 budget: Money for Health Gap, 911 center and police OT, and lots of fee increases," 27 June 2018

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1951, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for lax

Adjective

Middle English, from Latin laxus loose — more at slack

Noun

by shortening & alteration (x as symbol for -crosse)

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Dictionary Entries near lax

lawyer palm

lawyer up

lawyer vine

lax

laxate

laxative

laxism

Statistics for lax

Last Updated

15 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lax

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

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More Definitions for lax

lax

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of lax

: not careful enough : not strict enough

lax

adjective
\ˈlaks \

Kids Definition of lax

1 : not firm or tight : loose The straps were lax.

2 : not stern or strict lax discipline

Other Words from lax

laxness noun

lax

adjective
\ˈlaks \

Medical Definition of lax 

1 of the bowels : loose sense 3

2 : having loose bowels

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Comments on lax

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