ob·​nox·​ious | \ äb-ˈnäk-shəs How to pronounce obnoxious (audio) , əb- \

Definition of obnoxious

1 : odiously or disgustingly objectionable : highly offensive
2 archaic : exposed to something unpleasant or harmful used with to
3 archaic : deserving of censure

Other Words from obnoxious

obnoxiously adverb
obnoxiousness noun

Examples of obnoxious in a Sentence

Let's get right into it. The title of your book, Why We Suck, is pretty obnoxious. Are we really that bad? — Rachel Deahl, Boston Globe, 30 Nov. 2008 "Not to sound obnoxious, but this downturn could be good for us," says Max Levchin, founder and CEO of Slide, in San Francisco. "Some of our competitors are going to go out of business." — Daniel Lyons, Newsweek, 20 Oct. 2008 Now that many large cities are surrounded by Stygian fields of concrete tedium, urban sprawl looks like an obnoxious side effect of prosperity and decline. — Graham Robb, The Discovery of France, 2007 The teller's eyes widened as a customer poured thousands of pennies onto the counter, an intentionally obnoxious way to pay a high heating bill. — Erik Eckholm, New York Times, 26 June 2006 He said some really obnoxious things about his ex-girlfriend at the party. Some teenagers were being loud and obnoxious. See More
Recent Examples on the Web This platitude has come to be a constant refrain on social media, as obnoxious and frequent as a car insurance commercial. Jenny Singer, Glamour, 23 June 2022 Satire has always had an admonitory function, and besides, some people are so obnoxious that a writer has to slow-walk the reader through their awfulness. Judith Shulevitz, The Atlantic, 11 May 2022 No one could be faulted for seeing the incident as a slap-back at the showbiz establishment’s most obnoxious figure. Armond White, National Review, 30 Mar. 2022 But as folks go back to the office, some find the sounds obnoxious — and annoying. Frank Witsil, Detroit Free Press, 5 Apr. 2022 Last Resort is a restaurant and bar chain known for its rowdy roadhouse atmosphere and intentionally obnoxious staff. Kathy Jumper, al, 17 Apr. 2022 This obnoxious process was required during Leadbetter's testing period because Steam Deck does not officially support a dual-boot option for multiple OS installs, even though fans have more recently come up with methods to do that. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, 13 Apr. 2022 One of the friends spends an obnoxious amount of money on a painting that is just a white painting. Jessi Virtusio, chicagotribune.com, 13 Apr. 2022 Audiences are less tolerant of cruel and obnoxious prank videos, especially when they are recorded in public spaces like university campuses. Diana Dasrath, NBC News, 13 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of obnoxious

1597, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for obnoxious

Latin obnoxius "under obligation, subservient, liable, exposed to, vulnerable" (of uncertain origin) + -ous

Note: Latin obnoxius has traditionally been taken to be a parasynthetic derivative from the phrase ob noxiam "due to wrongdoing, on account of bad behavior" (see noxious), but this explanation does not account for the primary senses of the word. Ernout and Meillet (Dictionnaire étymologique de la langue latine) take -noxius as a desiderative derivative from the base of nancīscī "to acquire" (see enough entry 1), parallel to anxius "worried"/angere "to strangle, distress" (see anxious), alsius "liable to injury from cold"/algēre "to be cold." The English sense "objectionable" is probably due to influence of noxious and its etymon, Latin noxius.

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The first known use of obnoxious was in 1597

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Last Updated

14 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Obnoxious.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/obnoxious. Accessed 8 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for obnoxious


ob·​nox·​ious | \ äb-ˈnäk-shəs How to pronounce obnoxious (audio) , əb- \

Kids Definition of obnoxious

: very disagreeable : hateful Judd had heard the obnoxious whine of the motorcycle every day.— Margo Sorenson, Firewatch

Other Words from obnoxious

obnoxiously adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on obnoxious

Nglish: Translation of obnoxious for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obnoxious for Arabic Speakers


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