[ noo-suh ns, nyoo- ]
/ ˈnu səns, ˈnyu- /


an obnoxious or annoying person, thing, condition, practice, etc.: a monthly meeting that was more nuisance than pleasure.
Law. something offensive or annoying to individuals or to the community, especially in violation of their legal rights.

Origin of nuisance

1375–1425; late Middle English nu(i)sa(u)nce < Anglo-French, equivalent to nuis(er) to harm (≪ Latin nocēre) + -ance -ance Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nuisance

British Dictionary definitions for nuisance

/ (ˈnjuːsəns) /


  1. a person or thing that causes annoyance or bother
  2. (as modifier)nuisance calls
law something unauthorized that is obnoxious or injurious to the community at large (public nuisance) or to an individual, esp in relation to his ownership or occupation of property (private nuisance)
nuisance value the usefulness of a person's or thing's capacity to cause difficulties or irritation

Word Origin for nuisance

C15: via Old French from nuire to injure, from Latin nocēre
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

Idioms and Phrases with nuisance


see make a nuisance of oneself.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.