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[im-pee-uh s, im-pahy-] /ˈɪm pi əs, ɪmˈpaɪ-/
not pious or religious; lacking reverence for God, religious practices, etc.; irreligious; ungodly.
Origin of impious
1565-75; < Latin impius. See im-2, pious
Related forms
impiously, adverb
impiousness, noun
1. sacrilegious, blasphemous, irreverent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for impious
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Error in speculative doctrine not impious - nor knowledge pious.

  • It seemed to me as if I had been heard, and that my impious prayers were about to be granted.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • It would be impious to strew our mother's bones along the way.

    Old Greek Folk Stories Told Anew Josephine Preston Peabody
  • This is so impious and abominable that I can never forgive him for it .

    The Memoirs of the Louis XIV. and The Regency, Complete Elizabeth-Charlotte, Duchesse d'Orleans
  • Do you not recollect that there was one idea which made the impious impious, and the pious pious?

    Euthyphro Plato
  • And you can say that this place is a foul imposture; this holy image an impious fraud!

    The Strolling Saint Raphael Sabatini
  • I might have slain him to dissolve the impious bond, yet I obeyed what is written.

    The Sea-Hawk Raphael Sabatini
  • Not the smallest little detachment of these impious polizones.

    Within the Tides Joseph Conrad
  • The Christians were disliked, not as superstitious, but as impious.

British Dictionary definitions for impious


lacking piety or reverence for a god; ungodly
lacking respect; undutiful
Derived Forms
impiously, adverb
impiousness, noun
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 impious

1590s, from Latin impius "without reverence, irreverent, wicked; undutiful, unpatriotic," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + pius (see pious). Related: Impiously; impiousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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