mis·​ce·​ge·​na·​tion | \ (ˌ)mi-ˌse-jə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce miscegenation (audio) , ˌmi-si-jə-ˈnā- \

Definition of miscegenation

: a mixture of races especially : marriage, cohabitation, or sexual intercourse between a white person and a member of another race (see race entry 1 sense 1a)

Note: The word miscegenation is associated especially with historical laws against interracial marriage. In the United States, such laws were declared unconstitutional in 1967.

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Other Words from miscegenation

miscegenational \ (ˌ)mi-​ˌse-​jə-​ˈnā-​shnəl How to pronounce miscegenation (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl , ˌmi-​si-​jə-​ˈnā-​ \ adjective

Examples of miscegenation in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Enter Mildred and Richard Loving, a Virginia couple whose June 12, 1967 Supreme Court ruling dealt a major blow to miscegenation laws. Brenna Williams, CNN, 12 June 2021 Once married to Ada, a white woman, Ming Tsu was beaten and sentenced to 10 years of hard desert labor after Ada’s bigoted father brought charges of miscegenation. Bethanne Patrick, Los Angeles Times, 11 June 2021 There were at least three attempts to add a miscegenation ban to the US Constitution, the last introduced by Sen. Coleman Blease in 1928. Eliott C. Mclaughlin, CNN, 27 May 2021 Somehow, barriers need to be erected against miscegenation. The Economist, 27 Mar. 2021 The lead was set to be played by Paul Muni in yellowface, and for Wong to act alongside the white actor would violate the Hays Code, which forbade depictions of miscegenation. Alison Willmore, Vulture, 26 Mar. 2021 In 1967, when miscegenation laws were overturned in the United States, 3% of all newlyweds were married to someone of a different race or ethnicity, as reported by the Pew Research Center. Marc Ramirez, USA TODAY, 8 Mar. 2021 In one instance, a Jew named Heinz Alexander was accused of the racial crime of miscegenation for having had an affair with an Aryan. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, 15 June 2020 Is a prohibition of miscegenation a discrimination against the colored member of the couple who would like to marry? Robert Verbruggen, National Review, 5 Feb. 2020

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

1863, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for miscegenation

irregular from Latin miscēre to mix + genus race — more at mix, kin

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The first known use of miscegenation was in 1863

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Cite this Entry

“Miscegenation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/miscegenation. Accessed 26 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for miscegenation



English Language Learners Definition of miscegenation

: sexual relations or marriage between people of two different races (such as a white person and a black person)

More from Merriam-Webster on miscegenation

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for miscegenation

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about miscegenation


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