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See more synonyms for meanness on Thesaurus.com
  1. the state or quality of being mean.
  2. a mean act: to answer meannesses with forgiveness.
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Origin of meanness

First recorded in 1550–60; mean2 + -ness
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for meanness

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • But he was a generous man and all meanness of spirit was foreign to his soul.

    Ancient Man

    Hendrik Willem van Loon

  • Still, I don't mind that, only as an indication of his meanness.

  • There are depths of meanness in your character, Renny, that I never suspected.

  • Oh, how you must have despised me for the folly, the meanness of my suspicions!

  • She despised herself for the meanness of her passion, and Joseph for its ill success.

    Joseph Andrews Vol. 1

    Henry Fielding

Word Origin and History for meanness


1550s, "weakness," from mean (adj.) + -ness. Sense of "baseness, poverty" is from 1650s; that of "stinginess" from 1755.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper