not reverent; manifesting or characterized by irreverence; deficient in veneration or respect: an irreverent reply.

Origin of irreverent

1485–95; < Latin irreverent- (stem of irreverēns) disrespectful. See ir-2, reverent
Related formsir·rev·er·ent·ly, adverb

Synonyms for irreverent Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for irreverent

Contemporary Examples of irreverent

Historical Examples of irreverent

  • It is not humor that is irreverent, but the mind that gives it the wrong turn.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • Not with an outburst of horror; he had not even been informed that he was irreverent.

  • The irreverent scoffer may call it "instinct," or talk about the "sense of smell."

    Concerning Cats

    Helen M. Winslow

  • He could tolerate no irreverent spirits in the sanctuary of the mountain.

    Mountain Meditations

    L. Lind-af-Hageby

  • For no matter how irreverent one likes to pose, one ought to reverence at least his Maker.

    The Book of Khalid

    Ameen Rihani

British Dictionary definitions for irreverent


irreverential (ɪˌrɛvəˈrənʃəl)


without due respect or veneration; disrespectful; flippant
Derived Formsirreverently, 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

Word Origin and History for irreverent

mid-15c., from Latin irreverentem (see irreverence). Related: Irreverently (early 15c.); irreverential.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper