pariah

noun
pa·​ri·​ah | \ pə-ˈrī-ə \

Definition of pariah 

1 : a member of a low caste of southern India
2 : one that is despised or rejected : outcast

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Examples of pariah in a Sentence

For decades, African states longed for the day when South Africa would be liberated from its status as the apartheid pariah and become the economic engine that would pull Africa out of its mire of poverty and underdevelopment, much as Japan did for the Pacific Rim. — Allister Sparks, Wilson Quarterly, Spring 2001 Once they began to migrate to the United States, especially after this country conferred citizenship on them in 1917, they discovered what it meant to be a pariah in the country that had adopted them. — John Hope Franklin, "The Land of Room Enough," 1981, in Race and History1989 Even as her star was rising in the outside world, she was becoming more and more a pariah in her own village, where her isolation and sense of rejection made her, for a time, a prisoner in her house, a victim of agoraphobia. — Judy Oppenheimer, New York Times Book Review, 3 July 1988 He's a talented player but his angry outbursts have made him a pariah in the sport of baseball. I felt like a pariah when I wore the wrong outfit to the dinner party.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Age of Reason ought to have rescued the black cat from its pariah status, but superstitions die hard. Amanda Foreman, WSJ, "The Dark Lore of Black Cats," 18 Oct. 2018 These days, in the era of #MeToo, the musical chairs politics of such portrait galleries has accelerated, as scores of former masters of the universe have become pariahs overnight. Town & Country, "Wall of Shame: What Happens to Controversial Portrait Walls in the #MeToo Era?," 30 Nov. 2018 Amid the controversy, other football teams canceled their upcoming games with Nihon, turning the school into something of a pariah. Ken Belson, New York Times, "The Football Hit Felt All Over Japan," 22 May 2018 Members who opposed the new government said the new executive branch would depend heavily on support from the anti-immigrant Sweden Democrats, the third-largest party, which is widely considered a pariah. Stavros Agorakis, Vox, "Vox Sentences: El Chapo’s trial is underway," 15 Nov. 2018 Crucially, while the U.K. might be a pariah to the EU, it won’t necessarily be seen as such by other countries. Simon Nixon, WSJ, "Britain Tells Two Brexit Stories That Add Up to One Big Problem," 8 Aug. 2018 The southern African nation eventually became an international pariah. Cara Anna, Fox News, "New Amnesty International leader's 1st move targets Zimbabwe," 15 Aug. 2018 Yet he was made a pariah by Antonio Conte last term and hardly got a look in, with a series of injuries claimed to be the reason for his lengthy absence. SI.com, "Report Claims Arsenal Have Lodged Shock €20m Offer for Wantaway Chelsea Centre-Back David Luiz," 14 June 2018 Start with the international setting that turned Weimar into an encircled pariah state. Josef Joffe, WSJ, "Is Germany Slouching Toward Weimar Again?," 23 Sep. 2018

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

1613, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pariah

Tamil paṟaiyan, literally, drummer

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More Definitions for pariah

pariah

noun

English Language Learners Definition of pariah

: a person who is hated and rejected by other people

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More from Merriam-Webster on pariah

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pariah

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pariah

Spanish Central: Translation of pariah

Nglish: Translation of pariah for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pariah for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pariah

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