perfunctory was our Word of the Day on 08/16/2017. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of perfunctory in a Sentence
- The eight-time Pro Bowl player sometimes goes several weeks without agreeing to do even the most perfunctory postgame interviews. —Nunyo Demasio, Sports Illustrated, 8 Jan. 2007
- Convivial and self-absorbed, he talks freely about crime and crooks, with only the most perfunctory nods toward conventional morality. —Edward Dolnick, The Rescue Artist, 2005
- You probably don't want to know how perfunctory was the presentation of the state's evidence, how tenth-rate was the performance of the court-appointed defense or how wretched was the end. —Christopher Hitchens, Nation, 23-30 Aug. 1999
the violinist delivered a perfunctory performance that displayed none of the passion and warmth he was once known for
Recent Examples of perfunctory from the Web
If an employee files a harassment complaint, many courts have interpreted the Faragher–Ellerth defense to require only a perfunctory investigation.
Brett Gardner and Starlin Castro each had three hits, and C. C. Sabathia turned in a solid start as the Yankees kept pace with the Boston Red Sox in the American League East with a perfunctory 5-2 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday night.
The board of directors' finance and administration committee approved the declaration Friday, although the board's executive counsel, Nolan Lambert, described that action as perfunctory for the sake of transparency.
Not surprisingly, Flaherty's investigators found in this perfunctory investigation that no law was broken.
Many of these artists have been around the block before and tweeted the perfunctory nomination announcement.
There’s little poetry in the growing feelings between Elizabeth and Olive and Bill, and less passion in the hurried seduction scenes which can seem perfunctory.
Even that has become more perfunctory in recent years.
Trump used his Vienna sausage-like twitter fingers to disinvite Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry from the perfunctory trip to the White House visit usually made by the champions of the NBA.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'perfunctory.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Perfunctory is a word whose origins are found entirely in Latin. First appearing in English in the late 16th century, it derives via the Late Latin perfunctorius, meaning "done in a careless or superficial manner," from the Latin perfungi, meaning "to accomplish" or "to get through with." That verb is formed by combining the prefix per-, meaning "through," with the verb fungi, meaning "to perform." "Fungi" can be found in the roots of such words as "function," "defunct," and "fungible." "Perfunctory" can describe something that is carried out with little effort or care, as in "He did a perfunctory job raking the leaves," but when used to describe a person it usually means "lacking enthusiasm."
Synonymsapathetic, casual, complacent, disinterested, incurious, insensible, insouciant, nonchalant, indifferent, pococurante, unconcerned, uncurious, uninterested
Related Wordshalfhearted, lukewarm, tepid; aloof, cold, numb, remote, unemotional; callous, hard-hearted, insensitive, unfeeling; calm, cool, detached, dispassionate; careless, heedless, mindless; impassive, impervious, phlegmatic, stoic (or stoical), stolid; lethargic, listless; unimpressed
Near Antonymsattentive, aware, conscientious, heedful, mindful; caring, sensitive, warmhearted; ardent, fervent, keen, passionate, warm, zealous
PERFUNCTORY Defined for English Language Learners
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