Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The state of being impolite; incivility; rudeness.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Incivility; rudeness.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a discourteous manner that ignores accepted social usage

Etymologies

impolite +‎ -ness (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • WORD: impoliteness

    EXAMPLE: ' The person to whom this book is dedicated, Phoebe Hurty, is no longer among the living, as they say. She was an Indianapolis widow when I met her late in the Great Depression. I was sixteen or so. She was about forty . . .

    ' . . . She wrote a sane and funny advice-to-the-lovelorn column for the Indianapolis Times, a good paper which is now defunct . . .

    ' . . . She wrote ads for the William H. Block Company, a department store which still flourishes in a building my father designed. She wrote this ad for an end-of-the-summer sale on straw hats: "For prices like this, you can run them through your horse and put them on your roses."

    ' . . . I became friends with her two sons, who were my age. I was over at their house all the time.

    ' She would talk bawdily to me and her sons, and to our girlfriends when we brought them around. She was funny. She was liberating. She taught us to be impolite in conversation not only about sexual matters, but about American history and famous heroes, about the distribution of wealth, about school, about everything.

    ' I now make my living by being impolite. I am clumsy at it. I keep trying to imitate the impoliteness which was so graceful in Phoebe Hurty. I think now that grace was easier for her than it is for me because of the mood of the Great Depression. She believed what so many Americans believed then: that the nation would be happy and just and rational when prosperity came.

    ' I never hear that word anymore: Prosperity. It used to be a synonym for Paradise. And Phoebe Hurty was able to believe that the impoliteness she recommended would give shape to an American paradise.

    ' Now her sort of impoliteness is fashionable. But nobody believes anymore in a new American paradise. I sure miss Phoebe Hurty. '

    --- 1973. KURT VONNEGUT. Breakfast of Champions, or, Goodbye Blue Monday. Preface (Pages 1 - 2).

    January 23, 2014