Definition of neglect in English:


Line breaks: neg|lect
Pronunciation: /nɪˈglɛkt


[with object]


[mass noun] Back to top  
  • 1The state of being uncared for: the place had a hopeless air of neglect
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    • Nothing looked the same and a vague air of neglect and disrepair hung over the streets, businesses, and homes.
    • Children born into trauma, loss, deprivation and neglect, begin this way.
    • I think the council could do more to prevent this kind of vandalism and dispel the air of neglect which pervades this allotment.
    disrepair, dilapidation, deterioration, shabbiness, disuse, abandonment
    rare desuetude
  • 1.1The action of not taking proper care of someone or something: she was accused of child neglect
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    • A family told of their anguish last night after an inquest jury found neglect at a Sheffield care home had contributed to the tragic death of a stroke patient hours after his emergency buzzer was taken away.
    • This social neglect to take care of our elderly is seriously eroding the international image of the nation as the world's 12 th largest economic power.
    • Disabled adults were subjected to a horrifying catalogue of abuse and neglect at a Yorkshire care home, a court heard yesterday.
  • 1.2Failure to do something: he was reported for neglect of duty
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    • I only hope that no one was injured because of the brief and regretted irresponsible neglect of my Civic Duty in reporting that which I believe to be criminal.
    • Oil contamination would result from neglect of compressor maintenance, leading to mechanical failure.
    • Earlier this year Janet and supporters marched on Downing Street in October to demand a public inquiry into Christopher's death after five police officers were cleared of neglect of duty.
    negligence, failure to take proper care, lack of proper care and attention, dereliction of duty, non-performance/non-fulfilment of duty, failure to take proper action, remissness, neglectfulness, carelessness, heedlessness, lack of concern, unconcern, laxity, laxness, slackness, irresponsibility; Scottish Law culpa
    formal delinquency


early 16th century: from Latin neglect- 'disregarded', from the verb neglegere, from neg- 'not' + legere 'choose, pick up'.

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