Definition of discordant in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌdisˈkôrd(ə)nt/


1Disagreeing or incongruous: the principle of meritocracy is discordant with claims of inherited worth
More example sentences
  • You might guess that a show selected by six different people would appear discordant, reflecting a clash of outlook and taste.
  • It examined the divergent and discordant forces at work in the UK at the time: Scottish, Welsh and English nationalism, as well as the Northern Ireland conflict.
  • As a consequence, the complex shows discordant evolutionary patterns at different levels of organization.
different, in disagreement, at variance, at odds, divergent, discrepant, contradictory, contrary, in conflict, conflicting, opposite, opposed, opposing, clashing;
incompatible, inconsistent, irreconcilable
1.1Characterized by quarreling and conflict: a study of children in discordant homes
More example sentences
  • Take phenomenological psychologists focusing on the subject and behaviourists focusing on objects: They typically do not just write in different journals, they also disagree with each other in discordant ways.
  • In the early years her Cabinet was argumentative and discordant, a consequence not only of disagreements about economic strategy but also of her argumentative and directive style.
  • Small businesses are becoming more discordant, with disciplinary procedures becoming formalised at an earlier stage and internal disagreements more likely to lead to legal action.
2(Of sounds) harsh and jarring because of a lack of harmony: bombs, guns, and engines mingled in discordant sound
More example sentences
  • Rakael frowned as a harsh, discordant sound echoed in her ears.
  • Furthermore, all manner of wind instruments are used to create discordant noises that sound dangerously close to flatulence.
  • Its voice grows harsh, and discordant, sounding more like two people talking at once.
inharmonious, tuneless, off-key, dissonant, harsh, jarring, grating, jangling, jangly, strident, shrill, screeching, screechy, cacophonous;
sharp, flat


strike a discordant note

Appear strange and out of place: the chair’s modernity struck a discordant note in a room full of eighteenth-century furniture
More example sentences
  • He was voted Sports Personality of the Year in 1955 but struck a discordant note on screen by using the occasion to slam the media for damaging British sport.
  • One bit of political background in the movie struck a discordant note.
  • Other than that, however, she has rarely struck a discordant note.



Pronunciation: /ˌdisˈkôrd(ə)ns/
Example sentences
  • These videos are accompanied by independently looping soundscapes that create surprising convergences and discordances through their fragmentation, distortion and repetition.
  • The overall effect was quite lush, but as you looked more closely there were little discordances.
  • This discordance caused misgivings among many of us.


Pronunciation: /-dnsē/
Example sentences
  • The discordancy of this design suggests that the theory involved is very important, and has many serious adherents who wear turtlenecks and smoke a lot.
  • In one case, the author writes that: ‘he was traduced, in other words, and his already disputatious, fractious personality was given a further push towards discordancy.’
  • If the aggressive discordancies of bebop music as played by musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker shaped the form of the book, its central idea is that of the ‘dream deferred.’


Pronunciation: /ˌdisˈkôrd(ə)ntlē/
Example sentences
  • Supposedly intelligent but extremely short-sighted members of our society shouted discordantly, ‘Houses before horses.’
  • Very dimly he could hear men roaring at each other, the cacophony of their voices jarring discordantly against each other.
  • Her laughter rises to meet his, blending discordantly, pitch against pitch until I can't take anymore, but they don't stop.


Late Middle English: from Old French descordant, present participle of descorder (see discord).

Words that rhyme with discordant

accordant, concordant, mordant, mordent

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: dis·cord·ant

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