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See more synonyms for negligent on Thesaurus.com
  1. guilty of or characterized by neglect, as of duty: negligent officials.
  2. lazily careless; offhand: a negligent wave of his manicured hand.
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Origin of negligent

1350–1400; Middle English, variant of necligent < Latin negligent-, necligent-, stem of negligēns, present participle of negligere, variant of neglegere to neglect; see -ent
Related formsneg·li·gent·ly, adverbnon·neg·li·gent, adjectivenon·neg·li·gent·ly, adverbo·ver·neg·li·gent, adjectiveo·ver·neg·li·gent·ly, adverbpre·neg·li·gent, adjectivequa·si-neg·li·gent, adjectivesu·per·neg·li·gent, adjectivesu·per·neg·li·gent·ly, adverbun·neg·li·gent, adjective

Synonyms for negligent

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for negligently

inadequately, carelessly, badly, indifferently, poorly, sloppily

Examples from the Web for negligently

Historical Examples of negligently

  • “An hour or more,” answered the other negligently, and took a pull at the dark beer.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • "With your permission," he said negligently; and drew the girl aside to the angle of the stairway.

    The Black Bag

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • "Well, if you like to call her so," returned Doro, negligently.

    A Spirit in Prison

    Robert Hichens

  • "Your sister and I have always hit it off," he said negligently.

    Howards End

    E. M. Forster

  • "The best thing for some of us would be to die at the oar," Captain Whalley said negligently.

    End of the Tether

    Joseph Conrad

British Dictionary definitions for negligently


  1. habitually neglecting duties, responsibilities, etc; lacking attention, care, or concern; neglectful
  2. careless or nonchalant
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Derived Formsnegligently, 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 negligently



late 14c., from Old French negligent "careless, negligent" (13c.) or directly from Latin negligentem "heedless, careless, unconcerned" (see negligence). Related: Negligently.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper