no·to·ri·e·ty | \ˌnō-tə-ˈrī-ə-tē \
plural notorieties

Definition of notoriety 

1 : the quality or state of being notorious the city's notoriety for corrupt and incompetent government— R. E. Merriam

2 : a notorious person love to have notabilities and notorieties under one roofThe Times Literary Supplement (London)

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Synonyms & Antonyms for notoriety


celebrity, fame, renown


anonymity, oblivion, obscureness, obscurity

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Examples of notoriety in a Sentence

He achieved instant fame and notoriety with the release of his film. She gained notoriety when nude photographs of her appeared in a magazine. His comment about the President has given him a notoriety that he enjoys very much.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The raven, a bird that does not necessarily find universal favor, has achieved notoriety as an evil omen in Europe. John Schandelmeier, Anchorage Daily News, "Some words on birds and their impact on Alaska and the rest of the world," 24 June 2018 Cho's sister, Hyun-ah, achieved worldwide notoriety after delaying a flight at JFK airport over the way nuts were served. Fox News, "Korean Air suspends 'nut rage' sister from work over tantrum," 17 Apr. 2018 With Young's combination of dazzling passes and long-range three-point shooting, Oklahoma won 10 consecutive games earlier in the season and gained national notoriety before a late-season slide led to an 18-14 overall record. Tom Schad, USA TODAY, "Trae Young plans to enter NBA draft after one season at Oklahoma," 20 Mar. 2018 Cleveland's Karamu House, for example, achieved notoriety outside of Northeast Ohio thanks to its interracial theater. Chuck Yarborough,, "2018 Tri-C High School Rock Off: Here's who's playing when in the semifinals," 16 Jan. 2018 Often, the celebrity is willing pay the accuser an amount of money to, essentially, go away and keep quiet—in that scenario, the celebrity would have circumvented the notoriety and time consumption associated with defending a lawsuit. Michael Mccann,, "Could Gareon Conley Legally Prove That Rape Allegation Caused Draft Slide, Financial Harm?," 12 July 2018 The key to becoming a super artist today seems to be notoriety—creating a bridge between personal branding and industry wealth. Gail Mitchell, Billboard, "Stax Legend Al Bell on Black Music's Living Legacy and Power: 'My Life's Mission Is to Make Sure It Doesn't Die'," 6 July 2018 The answer lies squarely with early studio owners—namely the Edison Trust cartel—who feared that notoriety would embolden actors to demand more money. Margaret Heidenry, HWD, "Introducing Florence Lawrence, Hollywood’s Forgotten First Movie Star," 25 May 2018 Medellin, a city that gained notoriety from hometown cocaine drug lord Pablo Escobar, and Cali, also of drug trafficking fame, are also popular destinations. Christina Austin, Fortune, "Why You Should Care About Colombia's Presidential Election This Weekend," 24 May 2018

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

circa 1650, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for notoriety

Middle French or Medieval Latin; Middle French notorieté, from Medieval Latin notorietat-, notorietas, from notorius

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Statistics for notoriety

Last Updated

20 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for notoriety

The first known use of notoriety was circa 1650

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More Definitions for notoriety



English Language Learners Definition of notoriety

: the condition of being famous or well-known especially for something bad : the state of being notorious


no·to·ri·e·ty | \ˌnō-tə-ˈrī-ə-tē \

Kids Definition of notoriety

: the state of being widely known especially for some bad characteristic He gained notoriety with the film.

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Comments on notoriety

What made you want to look up notoriety? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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