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90s Slang You Should Know


[in-el-i-guh nt] /ɪnˈɛl ɪ gənt/
not elegant; lacking in refinement, gracefulness, or good taste.
Origin of inelegant
First recorded in 1500-10, inelegant is from the Latin word inēlegant- (stem of inēlegāns). See in-3, elegant
Related forms
inelegantly, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for inelegant
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The ornament upon them is not inelegant, and is somewhat Saracenic in its character.

  • It is often seen in pictures and portraits.403 It is inelegant and destitute of meaning.

    Folkways William Graham Sumner
  • You must certainly, in the course of your little experience, have felt the different effects of elegant and inelegant speaking.

  • The use of this word in the sense of determined is not only inelegant but indefensible.

    The Verbalist Thomas Embly Osmun, (AKA Alfred Ayres)
  • To say the least, it is inelegant; and Pansy Blossoms should be very elegant, to match their lovely dress, and general appearance.

  • They were built of unhewn stone, but solid, and not inelegant.

  • At sunset, Monsieur Manuel returned, led us into another apartment, where a not inelegant dinner was served up to us.

    Rattlin the Reefer Edward Howard
British Dictionary definitions for inelegant


lacking in elegance or refinement; unpolished or graceless
coarse or crude
Derived Forms
inelegance, inelegancy, noun
inelegantly, adverb
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 inelegant

c.1500, from French inélégant (15c.), from Latin inelegantem (nominative inelegans) "not choice, without taste, without judgment," from in- "not" (see in- (1)) + elegans (see elegant). Related: Inelegantly; inelegance.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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