Definition of promiscuous in English:

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Pronunciation: /prəˈmɪskjʊəs/


1Having or characterized by many transient sexual relationships: she’s a wild, promiscuous, good-time girl promiscuous behaviour
More example sentences
  • If the girl was deemed promiscuous, became pregnant, or could not keep a job, she could be returned to the reform school.
  • The only reason he turned her down is because this rumor got started that Christy was the most promiscuous girl at our school.
  • After many years of directing my own sexual education in Paris, I came to see myself as a ‘liberated woman,’ or what some perhaps would call a promiscuous adventurer.
licentious, sexually indiscriminate, immoral, unchaste, debauched, dissolute, dissipated, profligate, of easy virtue, fast;
libertine, wanton, abandoned, unrestrained, uncontrolled, incontinent
informal easy, swinging
North American informal roundheeled
West Indian informal slack
informal, derogatory sluttish, whorish, tarty, slaggy
dated loose, fallen
archaic light
rare riggish
2Demonstrating or implying an unselective approach; indiscriminate or casual: the city fathers were promiscuous with their honours
More example sentences
  • As the American houses have seduced corporate Britain, so companies have become more promiscuous in their search for intelligence.
  • There's a difference between being promiscuous and making serious strategic bets that may be the cause for regrets.
indiscriminate, undiscriminating, unselective, random, irresponsible, haphazard, thoughtless, unthinking, unconsidered, casual, careless
2.1Consisting of a wide range of different things: Americans are free to choose from a promiscuous array of values
More example sentences
  • To me, there seems something promiscuous about his geographical range: it looks as though he is looking for battles to fight.



Pronunciation: /prəˈmɪskjʊəsli/
Example sentences
  • In 1984, Marxist theorist Frederic Jameson lamented the eruption of a new style of painting that borrowed promiscuously from history and mythology was yet another symptom of a malaise rooted in the emergence of consumer capitalism.
  • While trademarks may sometimes lose protection if they become used promiscuously, copyrighted works remain protected no matter how publicly they're distributed.
  • We recognize that wise statesmen resist the temptation to use power promiscuously, and we stress the virtues of prudence, and self-restraint, in foreign policy.


Pronunciation: /prəˈmɪskjʊəsnəs/
Example sentences
  • This human promiscuousness is, of course, just what city-haters detest.


Early 17th century: from Latin promiscuus 'indiscriminate', (based on miscere 'to mix') + -ous. The early sense was 'consisting of elements mixed together', giving rise to 'indiscriminate' and 'undiscriminating', whence the notion of 'casual'.

  • miscellany from late 16th century:

    This goes back to the Latin miscellus mixed from miscere ‘mix’ ( see mash). This also lies behind promiscuous (early 17th century). Its early sense was ‘consisting of elements mixed together’, giving rise to ‘indiscriminate’, and ‘undiscriminating’, from which the notion of ‘casual’ arose.

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