neg·​li·​gi·​ble ˈne-gli-jə-bəl How to pronounce negligible (audio)
: so small or unimportant or of so little consequence as to warrant little or no attention : trifling
a negligible error
last year sales were negligible
a negligible risk
a negligible effect
negligibility noun
negligibly adverb

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Did you know?

Negligible comes from the same Latin verb as neglect, so something negligible is literally "neglectable". If an accident results in negligible damage to your car, you should be thankful. If two years of intense focus on testing in the classroom results in a negligible improvement in student test scores, it's probably time to try something new.

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Example Sentences

A negligible amount of damage was done to the vehicle. The price difference was negligible.
Recent Examples on the Web That said, there are many highly-effective treatments that can definitely stave off worsening symptoms and even take psoriasis from severe to negligible with few or no side effects. Cassie Shortsleeve, Men's Health, 16 Sep. 2022 The brothers, who were paid negligible wages for their work, couldn’t afford the fee. Cezary Podkul, ProPublica, 13 Sep. 2022 Effectively all of its sales for the week were on CD (a negligible number were sold via digital download); the set was not issued on any other physical format. Keith Caulfield, Billboard, 9 Aug. 2022 Effectively all of its sales for the week were on CD (a negligible number were sold via digital download); the set was not issued on any other physical format. Keith Caulfield, The Hollywood Reporter, 7 Aug. 2022 The 49ers hope the drop-off from Mack is negligible or nonexistent. Eric Branch, San Francisco Chronicle, 4 Sep. 2022 From this perspective, the Nenana-Totchaket area seems negligible. Yasmin Tayag, The New Yorker, 30 Aug. 2022 The Hyundai Ioniq 5 shows itself to be a confident performer with negligible body roll while cornering thanks to its wide stance and a ton of mass placed down low. Tribune News Service, cleveland, 20 Aug. 2022 Researchers from Princeton and Dartmouth said the impact could be negligible or as much as 22 million tons (20 million metric tons) in the U.S., plus much more abroad. Matthew Brown And Michael Phillis, Anchorage Daily News, 18 Aug. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'negligible.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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Word History


Latinization of French négligeable, from négliger "to disregard, neglect" (going back to Middle French negliger, borrowed from Latin neglegere, neclegere "to disregard, do nothing about") + -able -able — more at neglect entry 1

First Known Use

1829, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of negligible was in 1829

Dictionary Entries Near negligible

Cite this Entry

“Negligible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Sep. 2022.

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Kids Definition



neg·​li·​gi·​ble ˈne-glə-jə-bəl How to pronounce negligible (audio)
: so small or unimportant as to deserve little or no attention
Crops received a negligible amount of rainfall.

More from Merriam-Webster on negligible

Last Updated: 21 Sep 2022

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