man·​splain ˈman-ˌsplān How to pronounce mansplain (audio)
mansplained; mansplaining

transitive + intransitive

of a man
: to explain something to a woman in a condescending way that assumes she has no knowledge about the topic
My least favorite player was Donnie, who tried to mansplain Scrabble because he didn't recognize me and took me for a neophyte.Roxane Gay
Maybe a friend mansplains to you when they're commenting on the outfit you're wearing (and what you could've done differently), giving you dating advice regarding your current partner, or telling you how to care for your home—issues that, very likely, you know more about than they do.Megan Grant
mansplainer noun
plural mansplainers
Streep makes her voice tiny, her movements timid, and Spielberg finds endless visual ways to remind us that she's the only woman in a room full of bossy men. All leading to a scene of Graham holding up a patrician hand and waving away a room full of stunned mansplainers. Gary Thompson
mansplaining noun
In many cases, the men that are doing the mansplaining are doing so not because they think someone needs to be talked down to, but because they themselves are insecure. Emily Price

Examples of mansplain in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Girls Pint Out is a national group for women who love craft beer and want to get together with other beer-loving women for a few pints without dealing with men who can’t fathom that some women enjoy piney, not fruity, IPAs, or feel the need to mansplain the science of brewing. Stephanie Williams, Washington Post, 25 Aug. 2022 Try your best not to ‘mansplain’ everything and just listen to women. Marta Balaga, Variety, 23 Nov. 2022 Nevermind the condescending tone of Sarandos trying to mansplain violence on screen to his staff, there’s also the issue of Sarandos completely ignoring the fact that violent crimes against trans people have actually risen, especially in America. Kathleen Newman-Bremang,, 18 Oct. 2021 Chris Harrison went on Extra to defend Kirkconnell's behavior—something even Kirkconnell had begged people not to do—and tried to mansplain the situation to former Bachelorette, and Black woman, Rachel Lindsay. The Editors, Marie Claire, 9 June 2021 Social Worker Linda has a giant martini and celebrates never having to hear that Randall Pearson guy mansplain her job to her ever again. Maggie Fremont, Vulture, 26 May 2021

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

Word History

First Known Use

2008, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of mansplain was in 2008

Dictionary Entries Near mansplain

Cite this Entry

“Mansplain.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Jun. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!