Definition of inarticulate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌinärˈtikyələt/


1Unable to speak distinctly or express oneself clearly: he was inarticulate with abashment and regret
More example sentences
  • He becomes completely inarticulate and unable to close the deal, as it were, because he loves her too much!
  • It's the one where he played a dumb sullen inarticulate Brooklyn paint-store clerk.
  • He was verbally inarticulate and could not enunciate a clear concept or formulate ideas.
tongue-tied, lost for words, unable to express oneself
1.1Not clearly expressed or pronounced: inarticulate complaints of inadequate remuneration
More example sentences
  • He's a little dumbfounded at reviews of the film that criticize the repetitiveness of some dialogue or inarticulate speech, two of the aspects that make the film feel true.
  • Paradoxically, his inarticulate speech and inchoate thinking vividly express his frustration and anger: he has no skills with which to cope effectively with the inevitable set-backs of his life.
  • I would think long and hard before assuming that inarticulate speech and a gift for malapropism are indicators of stupidity.
unintelligible, incomprehensible, incoherent, unclear, indistinct, mumbled, muffled
1.2Not expressed; unspoken: mention of her mother filled her with inarticulate irritation
More example sentences
  • Because so many of the encounters are inarticulate, ideas aren't developed as fluently as in the two earlier films.
  • At that moment he felt toward Mary and Jan a dumb, cold, and inarticulate hate.
  • Her comment struck me as the most penetrating I have heard in relation to this much-discussed film, which has incited a level of critical hostility, in some cases bordering on inarticulate rage, rarely seen in the mass media these days.
unspoken, silent, unexpressed, wordless, speechless, unvoiced
2Without joints or articulations.
2.1 Zoology Denoting a brachiopod in which the valves of the shell have no hinge and are held together by muscles.
Example sentences
  • The Discinids are a small long-lived group of inarticulate brachiopods with chitinophosphatic shells.
  • The Brachiopoda for example, was present, but greatest diversity was shown by inarticulate brachiopods (like the one in the upper middle, from the Upper Cambrian of Iowa).
  • Quasimodaspis, along with the inarticulate brachiopods that are the only other fossils so far recovered from this locality, was probably transported from a shallower facies.



Pronunciation: /-ləsē/
Example sentences
  • What was important to us was to make a film that was about a kind of inarticulacy of experience, which was about how difficult it is to develop, whatever age you are - whether you're 17 or whether you're 40.
  • Yet for me, for whatever reason - maybe it was my small rebellion - it was inarticulacy that moved me.
  • His dewy-eyed, slightly fumbling sincerity - his brilliantly articulate impersonation of earnest inarticulacy - has all along been tied to this self-projection as a Good Man.


Pronunciation: /ˌinärˈtikyələtlē/
Example sentences
  • They express, however inarticulately, an understanding of what life might be about, outside the constraints of work and the struggle for survival.
  • I stood and rather inarticulately said my piece.
  • I'm not trying to have an argument either - that's what the ‘I don't care’ was inarticulately trying to express.


Pronunciation: /ˌinärˈtikyələtnəs/
Example sentences
  • The same inarticulateness and lack of differentiation described below makes it difficult to come up with much germane to the major event of the day, but when words seem like a luxury, there's always film.
  • But inarticulateness can be a serious liability when nuanced explanations from the Commander-in-Chief are required.
  • So when I found out that he was on the panel, I was reduced to a bundle of inarticulateness.


Early 17th century: from in-1 'not' + the adjective articulate; the sense 'not clearly pronounced' corresponds to that of late Latin inarticulatus.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: in·ar·tic·u·late

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