vul·​gar·​i·​ty | \ ˌvəl-ˈger-rə-tē How to pronounce vulgarity (audio) , -ˈga-rə-\
plural vulgarities

Definition of vulgarity

1 : something vulgar
2 : the quality or state of being vulgar

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Examples of vulgarity in a Sentence

a comedian known for her vulgarity I was shocked by the vulgarity of his language. He uttered a vulgarity and was silent. We have a policy against printing vulgarities in our magazine.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In Louisville, a young black woman holding an anti-Trump sign was violently shoved by several white men while people around her called her the n-word and used a vulgarity. Eugene Scott, Washington Post, "Before Trump warned that Maxine Waters had ‘called for harm,’ he told supporters he’d like to punch a protester," 25 June 2018 Or maybe the president’s spectacular vulgarity will finally sink him? Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "The Week in Washington: “They Try to Take You Out with Bullshit”," 3 Mar. 2019 The irony lies in the confronting vulgarity of this speech, but not in its substance. Katherine Cross, The Verge, "The Oscar Wilde of YouTube fights the alt-right with decadence and seduction," 24 Aug. 2018 Late in the campaign and seeking to reverse the polls, Meade has changed style, adopting a more folksy manner and even tossing off some mild vulgarity. Maria Verza, Fox News, "Ruling party's Meade banking on upset in Mexico election," 26 June 2018 Disenchantment does not indulge in any vulgarity, nudity, gratuitous violence, or other FCC-enraging practices. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Disenchantment review: Groening’s new Netflix toon is off to a bloody good start," 7 Aug. 2018 Making him read his own texts Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., took his five minutes to force Strzok to read some of his own texts - including ones that used vulgarities. Aaron Blake,, "6 key moments from Peter Strzok’s wild hearing," 12 July 2018 Fair warning, there is some vulgarity in the video. Ej Smith,, "Video: Joel Embiid takes on Jayson Tatum and Mo Bamba, Markelle Fultz practices with Drew Hanlen," 11 July 2018 The luxurious plays ball with the gritty, romance with pornography, ostentatious chic with Rachel’s signature raw and goofy awkwardness, which flirts with but never quite tips into vulgarity. Vogue, "In L.A., Rachel Feinstein Finds Inspiration in the Victoria's Secret Runway Show," 13 Jan. 2018

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for vulgarity

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Time Traveler for vulgarity

The first known use of vulgarity was in 1579

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More Definitions for vulgarity



English Language Learners Definition of vulgarity

: the quality or state of not having good taste, manners, politeness, etc.
: something (such as a word) that is offensive or rude


vul·​gar·​i·​ty | \ ˌvəl-ˈger-ə-tē How to pronounce vulgarity (audio) \
plural vulgarities

Kids Definition of vulgarity

1 : the quality or state of having or showing poor taste or manners
2 : rude or offensive language or behavior

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More from Merriam-Webster on vulgarity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vulgarity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vulgarity

Spanish Central: Translation of vulgarity

Nglish: Translation of vulgarity for Spanish Speakers

Comments on vulgarity

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to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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