[ prej-uh-dis ]
See synonyms for: prejudiceprejudicedprejudices on

  1. an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason.

  2. any preconceived opinion or feeling, either favorable or unfavorable.

  1. unreasonable feelings, opinions, or attitudes, especially of a hostile nature, regarding an ethnic, racial, social, or religious group.

  2. such attitudes considered collectively: The war against prejudice is never-ending.

  3. damage or injury; detriment: a law that operated to the prejudice of the majority.

verb (used with object),prej·u·diced, prej·u·dic·ing.
  1. to affect with a prejudice, either favorable or unfavorable: His honesty and sincerity prejudiced us in his favor.

Idioms about prejudice

  1. without prejudice, Law. without dismissing, damaging, or otherwise affecting a legal interest or demand.

Origin of prejudice

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English, from Old French, from Latin praejūdicium “prejudgment,” originally “preliminary or previous judicial inquiry,” equivalent to prae- pre- + jūdicium “legal proceedings, judging” (jūdic-, stem of jūdex judge + -ium -ium)

synonym study For prejudice

2. See bias.

Other words for prejudice

Other words from prejudice

  • prej·u·diced·ly, adverb
  • prej·u·dice·less, adjective
  • non·prej·u·diced, adjective
  • qua·si-prej·u·diced, adjective

Words that may be confused with prejudice

Words Nearby prejudice Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use prejudice in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for prejudice


/ (ˈprɛdʒʊdɪs) /

  1. an opinion formed beforehand, esp an unfavourable one based on inadequate facts

  2. the act or condition of holding such opinions

  1. intolerance of or dislike for people of a specific race, religion, etc

  2. disadvantage or injury resulting from prejudice

  3. to the prejudice of to the detriment of

  4. without prejudice law without dismissing or detracting from an existing right or claim

  1. to cause to be prejudiced

  2. to disadvantage or injure by prejudice

Origin of prejudice

C13: from Old French préjudice, from Latin praejūdicium a preceding judgment, disadvantage, from prae before + jūdicium trial, sentence, from jūdex a judge

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

Cultural definitions for prejudice


A hostile opinion about some person or class of persons. Prejudice is socially learned and is usually grounded in misconception, misunderstanding, and inflexible generalizations. In particular, African-Americans have been victims of prejudice on a variety of social, economic, and political levels. (See civil rights movement and segregation.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.