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[dis-per-it, dih-spar-] /ˈdɪs pər ɪt, dɪˈspær-/
distinct in kind; essentially different; dissimilar:
disparate ideas.
Origin of disparate
1580-90; < Latin disparātus separated (past participle of disparāre), equivalent to dis- dis-1 + par(āre) to prepare (see pare) + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
disparately, adverb
disparateness, noun
nondisparate, adjective
nondisparately, adverb
nondisparateness, noun
Can be confused
desperate, disparate.
separate, divergent, incommensurable, unlike. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for disparate
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • No doubt his attachment to the disparate couple counted for not a little.

    Romance Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
  • Such associations of disparate senses are called complications.

    An Introduction to Psychology

    Wilhelm Max Wundt
  • The disparate elements of the mediaeval personality were as yet unblended.

  • But Noli was too radical to command the support of the disparate coalition that had ousted Zogu.

    Area Handbook for Albania Eugene K. Keefe
  • He has succeeded, according to them, in heaping together an immense amount of information, but it is of the most disparate value.

British Dictionary definitions for disparate


utterly different or distinct in kind
(pl) unlike things or people
Derived Forms
disparately, adverb
disparateness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin disparāre to divide, from dis-1 + parāre to prepare; also influenced by Latin dispar unequal
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for disparate

c.1600, "unlike in kind," from Latin disparatus, past participle of disparare "divide, separate," from dis- "apart" (see dis-) + parare "get ready, prepare" (see pare); meaning influenced by Latin dispar "unequal, unlike." Related: Disparately; disparateness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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