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[neg-li-juh nt] /ˈnɛg lɪ dʒənt/
guilty of or characterized by neglect, as of duty:
negligent officials.
lazily careless; offhand:
a negligent wave of his manicured hand.
Origin of negligent
1350-1400; Middle English, variant of necligent < Latin negligent-, necligent-, stem of negligēns, present participle of negligere, variant of neglegere to neglect; see -ent
Related forms
negligently, adverb
nonnegligent, adjective
nonnegligently, adverb
overnegligent, adjective
overnegligently, adverb
prenegligent, adjective
quasi-negligent, adjective
supernegligent, adjective
supernegligently, adverb
unnegligent, adjective
1. neglectful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for negligently
Historical Examples
  • “An hour or more,” answered the other negligently, and took a pull at the dark beer.

    The Secret Agent Joseph Conrad
  • "With your permission," he said negligently; and drew the girl aside to the angle of the stairway.

    The Black Bag Louis Joseph Vance
  • "Well, if you like to call her so," returned Doro, negligently.

    A Spirit in Prison Robert Hichens
  • "Your sister and I have always hit it off," he said negligently.

    Howards End E. M. Forster
  • "The best thing for some of us would be to die at the oar," Captain Whalley said negligently.

    End of the Tether Joseph Conrad
  • "Oh, it is filled with Court gossip," said the reader, negligently.

  • He laid down the watch on the table, then, negligently, pushed his hat over it.

  • "It ought to be easy enough in such a city as this," said I, negligently.

    Confessions Of Con Cregan Charles James Lever
  • "I wanted to please you," dropped Mrs. Travers, negligently.

    The Rescue Joseph Conrad
  • “There are some dancing girls staying in the house,” I said negligently.

    The Arrow of Gold Joseph Conrad
British Dictionary definitions for negligently


habitually neglecting duties, responsibilities, etc; lacking attention, care, or concern; neglectful
careless or nonchalant
Derived Forms
negligently, 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 negligently



late 14c., from Old French negligent "careless, negligent" (13c.) or directly from Latin negligentem "heedless, careless, unconcerned" (see negligence). Related: Negligently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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