mis·​ce·​ge·​na·​tion (ˌ)mi-ˌse-jə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce miscegenation (audio)
: 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.

(ˌ)mi-ˌse-jə-ˈnā-shnəl How to pronounce miscegenation (audio)

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web These duties included not raping Black women on the side and contributing to miscegenation. Laura Mallonee, Smithsonian Magazine, 21 Nov. 2022 Blacula meets Shaft with some miscegenation anxiety thrown in for kicks. Lea Anderson, Men's Health, 29 Aug. 2022 Not only did most lawmakers support miscegenation laws in the late nineteenth century, but interracial relationships were not accepted by a majority of Americans, in general, in opinion polls, until the 1990s. Matt Ford, The New Republic, 11 May 2022 In a similar vein, despite valorizing Canudos residents in certain moments, da Cunha concluded that the Northeast’s inferior geology bred inferior men, and that miscegenation put the Brazilian nation at risk. Ela Bittencourt, Harper’s Magazine , 7 Dec. 2021 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 See More

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.

Word History


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

First Known Use

1863, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of miscegenation was in 1863

Dictionary Entries Near miscegenation

Cite this Entry

“Miscegenation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/miscegenation. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition



mis·​ce·​ge·​na·​tion (ˌ)mis-ˌej-ə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce miscegenation (audio)
: marriage or interbreeding between persons of different races

More from Merriam-Webster on miscegenation

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