nonsense

noun
non·​sense | \ ˌnän-ˌsen(t)s How to pronounce nonsense (audio) , ˈnän(t)-sən(t)s\

Definition of nonsense

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : words or language having no meaning or conveying no intelligible ideas "And the mome raths outgrabe" is pure nonsense.
b(1) : language, conduct, or an idea that is absurd or contrary to good sense To regard the struggle for existence as tragic, however, is logical nonsense.— O. B. Hardison Jr.
(2) : an instance of absurd action Today's teenagers are … sharp observers of the nonsenses of adult life and society …— Bernard Trafford
2a : things of no importance or value : trifles the raincoats are classic, without any nonsenseNew Yorker
b : affected or impudent conduct took no nonsense from subordinates The teacher tolerated no nonsense in her classroom.
3 : genetic information consisting of one or more codons that do not code for any amino acid and usually cause termination of the molecular chain in protein synthesis (see synthesis sense 1)

nonsense

adjective

Definition of nonsense (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : consisting of an arbitrary grouping of speech sounds or symbols \ˈshrȯg-ˌthī-əmpth\ is a nonsense word a nonsense syllable
2 : consisting of one or more codons that are genetic nonsense — compare antisense, missense

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Other Words from nonsense

Noun

nonsensical \ ˌnän-​ˈsen(t)-​si-​kəl How to pronounce nonsensical (audio) \ adjective
nonsensically \ ˌnän-​ˈsen(t)-​si-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce nonsensically (audio) \ adverb
nonsensicalness \ ˌnän-​ˈsen(t)-​si-​kəl-​nəs How to pronounce nonsensicalness (audio) \ noun

Examples of nonsense in a Sentence

Noun

I don't know why you believe that nonsense about certain numbers being unlucky. She thinks that astrology is nonsense. Don't listen to him. He's talking nonsense. He was not in the mood to put up with any nonsense from his little brother. If they start pushing each other or some such nonsense, send them to their rooms. She doesn't take any nonsense from anyone. Many of the words in the poem are nonsense. I understood so few of the words they were using that the conversation sounded like nonsense to me.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Apple's laptops are great, no-nonsense work machines. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "Need a New Macbook? Amazon Is Letting Them Go for Cheap Today Only," 22 Feb. 2019 Menu items are no-nonsense and done well (check out the catch of the day in particular, or the fine burger for lunch or a simpler dinner). Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Dining patios proliferate around Milwaukee; a look at some new ones for 2018," 10 July 2018 Now, the Dolphins surely think this is all nonsense. Adam H. Beasley, miamiherald, "Hardly anyone outside of Dolphins headquarters is bullish on Miami's 2018 chances | Miami Herald," 8 May 2018 The organization’s not politicized, that stuff is all nonsense. Time Staff, Time, "Read the Full Transcript From James Comey's ABC Interview," 17 Apr. 2018 As ex-boyfriend responses to this nonsense go, that’s a nice one. Jennifer Wright, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kamala Harris Is Already Being Called a Prostitute," 29 Jan. 2019 Poor Colton has to stand there and smile and be so patient with all this virgin nonsense. Anna Moeslein, Glamour, "The Bachelor Season Premiere Recap: Did You Know Colton's a Virgin?," 7 Jan. 2019 The generation that was notorious for the nonsense happened off the field than on it finally live up to their billing by beating Russia and reaching the World Cup semifinals on Saturday. Juan Pimiento, chicagotribune.com, "Belgium eliminate Brazil, England make history and the best of the World Cup weekend," 8 July 2018 What happened to Sense8 was a distinctly more 2010s variety of marketing mess: Throw everything at the wall and hope watchers will hop aboard the nonsense. Emma Grey Ellis, WIRED, "What Brought Sense8 Back—and What Killed It in the First Place," 8 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Stapleton’s no-nonsense half hour set the tone for the rest of the night, as a house band settled in to back solo slots from Taylor, Henley and Walsh without breaks. Michael Rietmulder, The Seattle Times, "Review: Joe Walsh’s VetsAid was a familial star-powered party at Tacoma Dome, raising $1.2 million," 12 Nov. 2018 Nac Un Ēd Ganību dambis 30 For traditional, no-nonsense Latvian fare, video and installation artist Katrīna Neiburga suggests Nac Un Ēd. Laura Bannister, Vogue, "Where to Go in Riga, Latvia, the New Arts Hub of the Baltic," 17 June 2018 Union stars as Shaun, a no-nonsense family woman cleaning up the mess her father left behind after his sudden death. Barbara Vandenburgh, azcentral, "Gabrielle Union kicks serious butt in violent ‘Breaking In’," 11 May 2018 Other symptoms include incoherent or nonsense speech, and behavior that is inappropriate for the situation. Marc Siegel, National Review, "President Trump and the Dangers of Armchair Psychiatry," 11 Jan. 2018 The girls around me were singing along, just nonsense sounds, warming up their voices. Edan Lepucki, Slate Magazine, "“Chorus”," 1 Feb. 2017 Coach Butch Jones, entering his fifth year leading the program, set the tone with his Wednesday no-nonsense press conference. Mike Griffith, ajc, "Tennessee football podcast: Team 121 carries quiet confidence into pregame buildup," 1 Sep. 2017 Hoffman supplied nonsense answers, calling himself Cardinal Spellman and claiming his group didn’t exist. Lorraine Boissoneault, Smithsonian, "How the New York Stock Exchange Gave Abbie Hoffman His Start in Guerrilla Theater," 24 Aug. 2017 But that didn't stop members of Congress from opining on the definition of the most popular nonsense word of Trump's presidency. Cleve R. Wootson Jr., Washington Post, "Trump tweets ‘covfefe,’ inspiring a semi-comedic act of Congress," 31 May 2017

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

Noun

1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

circa 1670, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for nonsense

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for nonsense

The first known use of nonsense was in 1612

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More Definitions for nonsense

nonsense

noun

English Language Learners Definition of nonsense

: words or ideas that are foolish or untrue
: behavior that is silly, annoying, or unkind
: language that has no meaning

nonsense

noun
non·​sense | \ ˈnän-ˌsens How to pronounce nonsense (audio) , -səns\

Kids Definition of nonsense

: foolish or meaningless words, ideas, or actions Don't believe such nonsense.

nonsense

noun
non·​sense | \ ˈnän-ˌsen(t)s, ˈnän(t)-sən(t)s How to pronounce nonsense (audio) \

Medical Definition of nonsense

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: genetic information consisting of one or more codons that do not code for any amino acid and usually cause termination of the molecular chain in protein synthesis — compare antisense, missense

nonsense

adjective

Medical Definition of nonsense (Entry 2 of 2)

: consisting of one or more codons that are genetic nonsense nonsense mutations

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More from Merriam-Webster on nonsense

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with nonsense

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for nonsense

Spanish Central: Translation of nonsense

Nglish: Translation of nonsense for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of nonsense for Arabic Speakers

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