• synonyms


[ih-rev-er-uh ns]
See more synonyms for irreverence on Thesaurus.com
  1. the quality of being irreverent; lack of reverence or respect.
  2. an irreverent act or statement.
  3. the condition of not being reverenced, venerated, respected, etc.
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Origin of irreverence

First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English word from Latin word irreverentia. See ir-2, reverence
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for irreverence

impudence, cheek, impertinence, mockery, blasphemy, profanity, impiety, ridicule, discourtesy, insult, derision, sauciness, rudeness, heresy, sin, flippancy, sinfulness

Examples from the Web for irreverence

Contemporary Examples of irreverence

Historical Examples of irreverence

  • There was no irreverence in the exclamation that broke from the girl's lips.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • To sell a church seems like the climax of irreverence; but they are doing as bad every day.

    The Christian

    Hall Caine

  • Her irony meant no irreverence but a vast derogation of Shad Wells.

    The Vagrant Duke

    George Gibbs

  • "No, sir," said Tate, almost overpowered at the irreverence of his questioner.

  • There will be irreverence no longer, because I will not allow it.

British Dictionary definitions for irreverence


  1. lack of due respect or veneration; disrespect
  2. a disrespectful remark or act
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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 irreverence


mid-14c., from Latin irreverentia "want of reverence, disrespect," from irreverentem (nominative irreverens) "disrespectful, irreverent," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + reverens, present participle of revereri "to stand in awe of" (see revere).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper