non·​vi·​o·​lent ˌnän-ˈvī-ə-lənt How to pronounce nonviolent (audio)
: abstaining or free from violence
nonviolently adverb

Examples of nonviolent in a Sentence

He argued that nonviolent drug offenders should receive shorter sentences.
Recent Examples on the Web The Biden administration’s omission of this assurance has increased Beijing’s suspicions that Washington would never accept any form of cross-strait integration, even if achieved through nonviolent means. Bonnie S. Glaser, Foreign Affairs, 30 Nov. 2023 Palestinian nonviolent efforts over the years have also been thwarted. Daoud Kuttab, The New Republic, 24 Oct. 2023 The crime waves are the result of a decrease in arrests for nonviolent crime due to jails and prisons being overcrowded. Misty Severi, Washington Examiner, 14 Nov. 2023 As the son of a nonviolent activist against British colonial rule, and as a Muslim married to a Hindu, Khan has been a popular symbol of pluralism that the Hindu right has long found irksome. Vaibhav Vats, The Atlantic, 29 Oct. 2023 Time for a Public Reckoning on Theft Rampant larceny in America’s major cities is a symptom of a political culture that demonizes police officers and turns a blind eye to nonviolent crime. WSJ, 24 Oct. 2023 My cousin, a nonviolent activist and Jerusalem native named Mubarak Awad, was deported by the Yitzhak Shamir government in 1996. Daoud Kuttab, The New Republic, 24 Oct. 2023 The justices heard arguments about how to interpret part of the law aimed at reducing prison sentences for people convicted of certain nonviolent drug crimes. Abbie Vansickle, New York Times, 2 Oct. 2023 The inmates ranged from people convicted of murder to nonviolent offenders sent away for life. Anat Rubin, ProPublica, 4 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'nonviolent.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1905, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of nonviolent was in 1905

Dictionary Entries Near nonviolent

Cite this Entry

“Nonviolent.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


non·​vi·​o·​lent (ˈ)nän-ˈvī-ə-lənt How to pronounce nonviolent (audio)
: not using violence : peaceful
: of, relating to, or marked by nonviolence
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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