[ dih-ling-kwuh n-see ]
/ dɪˈlɪŋ kwən si /

noun, plural de·lin·quen·cies.

failure in or neglect of duty or obligation; dereliction; default: delinquency in payment of dues.
wrongful, illegal, or antisocial behavior.Compare juvenile delinquency.
any misdeed, offense, or misdemeanor.
something, as a debt, that is past due or otherwise delinquent.

Nearby words

  1. delineate,
  2. delineation,
  3. delineator,
  4. delineavit,
  5. delink,
  6. delinquency, juvenile,
  7. delinquent,
  8. deliquesce,
  9. deliquescence,
  10. deliquescent

Origin of delinquency

1630–40; < Late Latin dēlinquentia fault, crime, equivalent to Latin dēlinquent- (stem of dēlinquēns, present participle of dēlinquere to do wrong, equivalent to dē- de- + linquere to leave) + -ia noun suffix; see -ency

Related formspre·de·lin·quen·cy, noun, plural pre·de·lin·quen·cies. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for delinquency

British Dictionary definitions for delinquency


/ (dɪˈlɪŋkwənsɪ) /

noun plural -cies

an offence or misdeed, usually of a minor nature, esp one committed by a young personSee juvenile delinquency
failure or negligence in duty or obligation; dereliction
a delinquent nature or delinquent behaviour

Word Origin for delinquency

C17: from Late Latin dēlinquentia a fault, offence, from Latin dēlinquere to transgress, from de- + linquere to forsake

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 delinquency



1630s, from Latin delinquentia "fault, crime, delinquency," from delinquentem (see delinquent).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper