\ ˈlaks How to pronounce lax (audio) \

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 How to pronounce laxation (audio) \ noun
laxly \ ˈlaks-​lē How to pronounce laxly (audio) \ 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 In jurisdictions with lax laws and willing judges, jail is the logical endpoint of a system that has automated the steps from high bills to debt to court, and that has given collectors power that is often unchecked. Lizzie Presser, ProPublica, "When Medical Debt Collectors Decide Who Gets Arrested," 16 Oct. 2019 Many first reached Syria by taking advantage of lax Turkish border controls. The Economist, "Turkey launches an attack on northern Syria," 10 Oct. 2019 Cheap Chinese labor and lax American laws motivated hundreds of U.S. corporations to shut down their domestic assembly plants and relocate to China. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "How China ‘Woke’ America," 3 Oct. 2019 Ronnebeck, a Mesa resident who does not live in the district, has cast Grijalva as a drunk who supports lax border controls. Ronald J. Hansen, azcentral, "'Angel Dad' Steve Ronnebeck to make congressional run in Rep. Raul Grijalva's district," 8 Aug. 2019 His real-world counterparts are said to be more lax. The Economist, "Japanese spies, once renowned, have fallen on hard times," 14 Sep. 2019 Thompson set her Twitter account to private, but, at around 10 p.m., her phone began lighting up with angry text messages; someone had circumvented the lax security measures on her Web site and leaked her number. Michael Schulman, The New Yorker, "Superfans: A Love Story," 9 Sep. 2019 The stipulations and requirements to prove eligibility were more lax under Track B. What complicates this, however, is homes were placed in tracks without checking first on occupancy. Allie Gross, Detroit Free Press, "Lawsuits take aim at Wayne County's controversial Action Before Auction program," 3 Sep. 2019 President Jair Bolsonaro—who has been very lax about destruction of the rainforest for commercial gain—has rejected international support as an attack on Brazil’s sovereignty. Annalisa Merelli, Quartz, "The world’s richest countries came up with just $22 million to fight the Amazon fires," 26 Aug. 2019

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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Time Traveler for lax

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for lax

Last Updated

15 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Lax.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/laxation. Accessed 21 November 2019.

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More Definitions for lax

How to pronounce lax (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of lax

disapproving : not careful enough : not strict enough
\ ˈlaks How to pronounce lax (audio) \

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
\ ˈlaks How to pronounce lax (audio) \

Medical Definition of lax

1 of the bowels : loose sense 3
2 : having loose bowels

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More from Merriam-Webster on lax

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lax

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lax

Spanish Central: Translation of lax

Nglish: Translation of lax for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lax for Arabic Speakers

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