throw·​away | \ ˈthrō-ə-ˌwā How to pronounce throwaway (audio) \

Definition of throwaway

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : designed to be thrown away : disposable throwaway containers
2 : written or spoken (as in a play) in a low-key or unemphatic manner throwaway lines
4 : marked by a tendency to discard things : overly wasteful a throwaway society



Definition of throwaway (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : one that is or is designed to be thrown away: such as
a : a free handbill or circular
b : a line of dialogue (as in a play) de-emphasized by casual delivery especially : a joke or witticism delivered casually
2 : something made or done without care or interest
3 : a child who has been forced to leave home or who has run away from indifferent or hostile parents

throw away

threw away; thrown away; throwing away; throws away

Definition of throw away (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to get rid of as worthless or unnecessary
2a : to use in a foolish or wasteful manner : squander
b : to fail to take advantage of : waste throw away an opportunity
3 : to make (something, such as a line in a play) unemphatic by casual delivery

Examples of throwaway in a Sentence

Verb I should throw away that torn shirt. if you buy a high-end computer, you'll just be throwing away money on a bunch of features you'll never use
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Modern dating culture often encourages a more throwaway attitude to relationships, but for Barbari, setting the right foundations is key to overcoming these challenges. Lizzie Cernik,, 27 Apr. 2022 Clever plotting—an early, seemingly throwaway scene in which Félix does some goofy martial-arts training turns out to be critical—and inventive character details enhance the wicked fun. Kyle Smith, WSJ, 16 June 2022 But while most launches over the past 60 years have involved throwaway launch vehicles, humanity should be moving toward sustainability, Jah says. Ramin Skibba, Wired, 17 Mar. 2022 However, through the ruse, a funny, throwaway moment in Return of the Jedi is better explained. Ryan Parker, The Hollywood Reporter, 12 Jan. 2022 There are no throwaway lines in Lesser Known Monsters; each story is rich and metamorphic, perfect for breaking the monotony of winter days. Wired Staff, Wired, 26 Nov. 2021 Name tags were throwaway stickers, not the usual recyclable kind., 29 July 2021 The characters in Snake Eyes always seem to be in climax-speak mode; even the most throwaway lines are steeped in portent. Bilge Ebiri, Vulture, 23 July 2021 That applies to the casting as well, which includes squandering Sacha Baron Cohen in a throwaway role. Brian Lowry, CNN, 17 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The result is that both parties reject policies that would fortify what St. John Paul II referred to as a culture of life and instead embrace what Pope Francis has called a throwaway culture that extends even to human beings. Timothy Dolan, WSJ, 8 June 2022 Wittiness and spirit abound, and there are no throwaway songs. David L. Coddon, San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 July 2022 The dialogue has been trimmed of throwaway jokes, mentions of offstage characters and verbose responses. Los Angeles Times, 8 July 2022 As his production neared its finish (technically the start), even throwaway lines accrued unexpected weight, landing sudden, sharp blows. New York Times, 7 July 2022 The real creative triumph is in the throwaway bits—the screenwriting marginalia. Kyle Smith, WSJ, 16 June 2022 The long touchdown pass was a back breaker for Miami, which forced Young into a throwaway from his own end zone on the previous play. Mark Heim |, al, 4 Sep. 2021 The title does not refer to Julie, by the way, but is a throwaway, somewhat facetious, reference to that other lover, Eivind (Herbert Nordrum), the one who doesn’t think Julie is sensible., 10 Feb. 2022 The one-two punch of a more serious/important mid-credits scene and a more lighthearted/throwaway post-credits scene has been the pattern for Marvel films lately. Erik Kain, Forbes, 5 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of throwaway


1883, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1886, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of throwaway was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near throwaway

throw away


throw a wobbly

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Last Updated

30 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Throwaway.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Aug. 2022.

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