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amoral

[ey-mawr-uh l, a-mawr-, ey-mor-, a-mor-]
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adjective
  1. not involving questions of right or wrong; without moral quality; neither moral nor immoral.
  2. having no moral standards, restraints, or principles; unaware of or indifferent to questions of right or wrong: a completely amoral person.
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Origin of amoral

First recorded in 1880–85; a-6 + moral
Related formsa·mor·al·ism, nouna·mo·ral·i·ty [ey-muh-ral-i-tee, am-uh-] /ˌeɪ məˈræl ɪ ti, ˌæm ə-/, nouna·mor·al·ly, adverb

Synonyms

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See immoral.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

wantonexcessiveunjustunreasonableunfairoutrageousuncivilizedbarbarouspreposterousunethicaldeceitfulunscrupulousimmoralunprofessionaldishonestunconscionableamoralcrookedcorruptnaughty

Examples from the Web for amoral

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Children and parents were amoral and competed for the same resources.

  • Fighting to hold her man; fighting the unknown odds of an alien world, the stealthy seduction of an amoral people.

    Impact

    Irving E. Cox

  • In respect to justice, to right and wrong, the spirit of Christianity is not so much immoral as amoral.

  • Iago has been described as immoral; he does not seem to me to be immoral, but amoral, as the intellect always is.

  • At one end were the amoral characters whose excesses became steadily worse as the situation blackened.

    The Armed Forces Officer

    U. S. Department of Defense


British Dictionary definitions for amoral

amoral

adjective
  1. having no moral quality; nonmoral
  2. without moral standards or principles
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Derived Formsamorality (ˌeɪmɒˈrælɪtɪ), nounamorally, adverb

usage

Amoral is often wrongly used where immoral is meant. Immoral is properly used to talk about the breaking of moral rules, amoral about people who have no moral code or about places or situations where moral considerations do not apply
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

Word Origin and History for amoral

adj.

"ethically indifferent," 1882, a hybrid formed from Greek privative prefix a- "not" (see a- (3)) + moral, which is derived from Latin. First used by Robert Louis Stephenson (1850-1894) as a differentiation from immoral.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper