neglect

verb
ne·glect | \ ni-ˈglekt \
neglected; neglecting; neglects

Definition of neglect 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to give little attention or respect to : disregard The building has been neglected for years.

2 : to leave undone or unattended to especially through carelessness The prison guard neglected his duty.

neglect

noun

Definition of neglect (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of neglecting something

2 : the condition of being neglected

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Other words from neglect

Verb

neglecter noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for neglect

Synonyms: Verb

bypass, disregard, forget, ignore, overlook, overpass, pass over, slight, slur (over)

Synonyms: Noun

desolation, dilapidation, disrepair, seediness

Antonyms: Verb

attend (to), heed, mind, regard, tend (to)

Antonyms: Noun

keeping, repair

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Choose the Right Synonym for neglect

Verb

neglect, disregard, ignore, overlook, slight, forget mean to pass over without giving due attention. neglect implies giving insufficient attention to something that merits one's attention. habitually neglected his studies disregard suggests voluntary inattention. disregarded the wishes of his family ignore implies a failure to regard something obvious. ignored the snide remark overlook suggests disregarding or ignoring through haste or lack of care. in my rush I overlooked a key example slight implies contemptuous or disdainful disregarding or omitting. slighted several major authors in her survey forget may suggest either a willful ignoring or a failure to impress something on one's mind. forget what others say

Verb

neglect and disregard mean to pass over something without giving it any or enough attention. neglect is used when a person does not give, whether deliberately or not, enough attention to something that deserves or requires attention. You have been neglecting your homework. disregard is used for deliberately overlooking something usually because it is not considered worth noticing. He disregarded the “keep out” sign.

Examples of neglect in a Sentence

Verb

The building has been neglected for years. The city has neglected the teacher shortage for too long. The prison guard neglected his duty.

Noun

The park was overgrown and littered from years of neglect. The parents were charged with child neglect. The house is in a state of neglect.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Mental fatigue, a topic that had been mostly neglected by exercise physiologists since the late 1800s, suddenly became a hot topic. Alex Hutchinson, Outside Online, "Here’s What We Know About Mental Fatigue," 10 July 2018 Lucrative potash deposits straddling the border have since been neglected. The Economist, "Ethiopia and Eritrea put an end to two decades of conflict," 10 July 2018 López Obrador has pledged to prioritize the rural and indigenous groups that have been neglected by previous governments, promising infrastructure programs and fixed price for agricultural projects. Ciara Nugent, Time, "Your Complete Guide to Mexico's 2018 Elections," 29 June 2018 Continual conservation projects maintain and often restore water quality and fish habitat, while also improving the beauty of areas that may have been neglected or damaged. Michigan Wildlife Council, Detroit Free Press, "Fishing enthusiasts hooked on conservation," 26 June 2018 Every state must make similar decisions when removing a child who has been neglected or abused by their parents. Matthew Haag, New York Times, "Governors Refuse to Send National Guard to Border, Citing Child Separation Practice," 19 June 2018 William is clearly open to reclaiming a part of his life that has been neglected in the past, and that's what makes his transformation so positive. refinery29.com, "I Demand Justice For Shannan On Queer Eye, Season 2," 18 June 2018 While not all apartments have been neglected and are well-maintained, about 20 percent of them still have minor violations, such as a lack of simple maintenance or landscaping, according to Dan Pavao, the city’s Building Official/Fire Marshal. Karen Pearlman, sandiegouniontribune.com, "El Cajon apartment inspection program keeping city safer," 14 June 2018 Investigators say the girl had been severely neglected before her death. Crimesider Staff, CBS News, "Police: Crate with handcuffs in home of girl, 5, found dead in storage unit," 22 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

For decades, British authorities tolerated evasion of its trade laws through a combination of neglect, incompetence and corruption. Peter Andreas, Washington Post, "Breaking border laws is as American as it gets," 3 July 2018 The information comes from various sources, sometimes investigated as possible cases of abuse and neglect, and sometimes accidents, Lennan said. Brian Contreras, San Antonio Express-News, "Child drownings on the rise in Bexar County and Texas," 3 July 2018 The father of the child was detained overnight for alleged parental neglect, and is to appear in court in September. Elaine Ganley, The Seattle Times, "France: Macron rewards migrant hero who saved dangling child," 28 May 2018 These bills often come up year after year without the Legislature approving the money owed to victims of neglect, abuse and malfeasance blamed in some part on government employees. Staff And Wire Reports, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Parents of South Florida boy shot and killed at school 20 years ago get settlement from state," 27 Mar. 2018 Bowser sued Western State Hospital and the state Department of Social and Health Services, which oversees the facility, claiming abuse and neglect. CBS News, "Report: Washington state psych hospital is "like going into hell"," 6 July 2018 Bowser sued Western State Hospital and the state Department of Social and Health Services, which oversees the facility, claiming abuse and neglect. Fox News, "Washington hospital is 'like going into hell'," 6 July 2018 Kinship Care provides relatives $300 a month per child to care for children removed from homes because of abuse or neglect but the state closed it to new applicants in 2013, citing a budget shortfall. Deborah Yetter, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky families face heartbreaking wait for Kinship Care money," 3 July 2018 Separating children from their parents can be more traumatic than abuse or neglect. Darlene Byrne, Time, "I'm a Judge Who Decides if Children Should Be Separated from Abusive Parents. Here’s How Trump’s Immigration Policy Should Change," 27 June 2018

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

Verb

1529, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1597, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for neglect

Verb

borrowed from Latin neglēctus, past participle of neglegere, neclegere "to disregard, do nothing about, fail to care for," from nec "not" (probably from ne- "not" + -ce, deictic element, going back to Indo-European *ḱe, *ḱi) + legere "to gather, select, read" — more at no entry 1, he entry 1, legend

Note: The Latin formative nec in this word and (with invariable voicing) in negō, negāre "to deny" (see negate) and negōtium "business, difficulty" (see negotiate) is presumably identical with Old Latin nec "not" and distinct from nec as a reduced form of neque "and not."

Noun

borrowed from Latin neglēctus, from neglegere, neclegere "to disregard, do nothing about, neglect entry 1" + -tus, suffix of verbal action

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Learn More about neglect

Dictionary Entries near neglect

Negev

negidim

Negishi

neglect

neglectable

neglected

neglectful

Statistics for neglect

Last Updated

12 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for neglect

The first known use of neglect was in 1529

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More Definitions for neglect

neglect

verb

English Language Learners Definition of neglect

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to fail to take care of or to give attention to (someone or something)

: to fail to do (something)

neglect

noun

English Language Learners Definition of neglect (Entry 2 of 2)

: lack of attention or care that someone or something needs

: the condition of not being taken care of

neglect

verb
ne·glect | \ ni-ˈglekt \
neglected; neglecting

Kids Definition of neglect

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to fail to give the right amount of attention to The property has been neglected.

2 : to fail to do or look after especially because of carelessness She neglected to say goodbye.

neglect

noun

Kids Definition of neglect (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : lack of attention or care to something or someone neglect of duty

2 : the state of not being looked after or given attention The house suffers from neglect.

neglect

noun
ne·glect

Legal Definition of neglect 

: a disregard of duty resulting from carelessness, indifference, or willfulness especially : a failure to provide a child under one's care with proper food, clothing, shelter, supervision, medical care, or emotional stability — compare abuse sense 2, negligence

Other words from neglect

neglect transitive verb
neglectful adjective

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Comments on neglect

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