egre·​gious | \ i-?grē-j?s How to pronounce egregious (audio) \

Definition of egregious

1 : conspicuous especially : conspicuously bad : flagrant egregious errors egregious padding of the evidence— Christopher Hitchens
2 archaic : distinguished

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Other Words from egregious

egregiously adverb
egregiousness noun

Did You Know?

Egregious derives from the Latin word egregius, meaning "distinguished" or "eminent." In its earliest English uses, egregious was a compliment to someone who had a remarkably good quality that placed him or her eminently above others. That's how English philosopher and theorist Thomas Hobbes used it in flattering a colleague when he remarked, "I am not so egregious a mathematician as you are." Since Hobbes' day, however, the meaning of the word has become noticeably less complimentary, possibly as a result of ironic use of its original sense.

Examples of egregious in a Sentence

… the public perception is that too many corporate executives have committed egregious breaches of trust by cooking the books, shading the truth, and enriching themselves with huge stock-option profits while shareholders suffered breathtaking losses. — John A. Byrne et al., Business Week, 6 May 2002 History cannot be rewritten, but some of its more egregious errors can be corrected—at least in part, at least symbolically.? … Or so assume a growing number of human-rights advocates. — Ellis Cose, Newsweek, 27 Aug. 2001 an egregious example of political bias the student's theme was marred by a number of egregious errors in spelling
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Recent Examples on the Web The distortion or downplaying of climate science is perhaps the most egregious category of examples. Chuck Hagel, Scientific American, "We Must Stop the Executive Branch from Suppressing Science," 18 Dec. 2019 Among the most egregious was his failure to find an open Zach Pascal on the opening drive of the game on a critical third down. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "Colts do everything wrong in falling from playoff race," 17 Dec. 2019 The rookie quarterback was 18 of 40 for 208 yards and an egregious interception in the end zone. oregonlive, "Kansas City has no trouble with the Denver Broncos: Recap, score, stats and more," 15 Dec. 2019 Our defensive breakdowns were just as egregious as our offensive breakdowns. Vince Ellis, Detroit Free Press, "Pistons late-game fails continue vs. Hornets in alarming 110-107 loss," 29 Nov. 2019 Only the whistles have not come after a third, fourth or fifth step, or any of those other egregious violations that have been mocked on video. Ira Winderman,, "Heat players are walking the walk — and that’s a problem," 18 Nov. 2019 Forcing the taxpayer to pay for climate damage is an egregious violation of climate justice. Gary Wockner, The Denver Post, "Guest Commentary: Vote “No” on Proposition DD – it will “Dam and Destroy” Colorado’s rivers," 2 Nov. 2019 Arguably the most egregious error came in New England on March 30. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, "Loons added many new players, but Francisco Calvo’s departure was X factor," 17 Oct. 2019 The third was arguably the most egregious, as the Wolverines were driving into Penn State territory. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football looks unprepared at Penn State: Halftime observations," 20 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'egregious.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of egregious

circa 1534, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for egregious

Latin egregius, from e- + greg-, grex herd — more at gregarious

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Time Traveler for egregious

Time Traveler

The first known use of egregious was circa 1534

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Last Updated

31 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Egregious.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 12 January 2020.

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More Definitions for egregious


How to pronounce egregious (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of egregious

formal : very bad and easily noticed


egre·​gious | \ i-?grē-j?s How to pronounce egregious (audio) \

Legal Definition of egregious

: extremely and conspicuously bad

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