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mal·​a·​prop ˈma-lə-ˌpräp How to pronounce malaprop (audio)
: an example of malapropism
was famed for malaprops: he always said "polo bears" and "Remember Pearl Island" and "neon stockings"Time


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variants or malapropian
: using or marked by the use of malapropisms
malaprop uses
"So many former players get into broadcasting and tend to butcher the English language. Some are malaprop artists. …"Jack Buck

Examples of malaprop in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Here came the confident and self-possessed John Fetterman, who moved easily, and delivered remarks without a single malaprop. Eliza Griswold, The New Yorker, 9 Nov. 2022 Imagine Sarah Palin without the you-betcha malaprops and the political grievances. New York Times, 24 Mar. 2020 Whenever there’s a funny Caribbean crab or malaprop-prone seagull onstage, younger kids are delighted. Donna Freedman, Anchorage Daily News, 23 Oct. 2019 After exhausting every other option for a new Juliet, Simon reluctantly hires Nancy, a malaprop-prone small-town Utah girl who can’t really act and has never performed Shakespeare. Pam Kragen,, 24 June 2018 Benson drew chuckles with his Benson Boogie — and with his malaprops. Washington Post, 15 Mar. 2018 The Guardian chose the Trump Twitter malaprop unpresidented. Stefan Fatsis, Slate Magazine, 3 Feb. 2017 Senator John Kerry in 2004 won laughs from a Democratic audience for mocking President George W. Bush’s halting speaking style and malaprops. Jonathan Martin, New York Times, 14 Oct. 2016 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'malaprop.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Mrs. Malaprop

First Known Use


1814, in the meaning defined above


1783, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of malaprop was in 1783

Dictionary Entries Near malaprop

Cite this Entry

“Malaprop.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2024.

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