[ in-kong-groo-uhs ]
/ ɪnˈkɒŋ gru əs /


out of keeping or place; inappropriate; unbecoming: an incongruous effect; incongruous behavior.
not harmonious in character; inconsonant; lacking harmony of parts: an incongruous mixture of architectural styles.
inconsistent: actions that were incongruous with their professed principles.

Origin of incongruous

First recorded in 1605–15, incongruous is from the Latin word incongruus inconsistent. See in-3, congruous

Related forms

in·con·gru·ous·ly, adverbin·con·gru·ous·ness, noun

Can be confused

congruous congruent incongruous incongruent Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for incongruous

British Dictionary definitions for incongruous



/ (ɪnˈkɒŋɡrʊəs) /


(when postpositive, foll by with or to) incompatible with (what is suitable); inappropriate
containing disparate or discordant elements or parts

Derived Forms

incongruously or incongruently, adverbincongruousness or incongruence, 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