from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Having no particular interest or concern; apathetic: indifferent to the sufferings of others.
  • adj. Having no marked feeling for or against: She remained indifferent toward their proposal.
  • adj. Not mattering one way or the other: It's indifferent to me which outfit you choose.
  • adj. Characterized by a lack of partiality; unbiased: an indifferent judge.
  • adj. Being neither too much nor too little; moderate.
  • adj. Being neither good nor bad; mediocre: an indifferent performance. See Synonyms at average.
  • adj. Being neither right nor wrong.
  • adj. Not active or involved; neutral: an indifferent chemical in a reaction.
  • adj. Biology Undifferentiated, as cells or tissue.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Not caring or concerned; uninterested, apathetic.
  • adj. Mediocre, usually used negatively in modern usage.
  • adj. Having no preference or bias, being impartial.
  • adj. Not significant in size or amount, immaterial.
  • adj. Being in the state of neutral equilibrium.
  • adv. To some extent, in some degree (intermediate between very and not at all); moderately, tolerably, fairly.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Not making a difference; having no influence or preponderating weight; involving no preference, concern, or attention; of no account; without significance or importance.
  • adj. Neither particularly good, not very bad; of a middle state or quality; passable; mediocre.
  • adj. Not inclined to one side, party, or choice more than to another; neutral; impartial.
  • adj. Feeling no interest, anxiety, or care, respecting anything; unconcerned; inattentive; apathetic; heedless.
  • adj. Free from bias or prejudice; impartial; unbiased; disinterested.
  • adv. To a moderate degree; passably; tolerably.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Without difference of inclination; not preferring one person or thing to another; neutral; impartial; unbiased; disinterested: as, an indifferent judge, juror, or arbitrator.
  • Feeling no interest, anxiety, or care; unconcerned; apathetic: as, a man indifferent to his eternal welfare.
  • Not making a difference; having no influence or preponderating weight; immaterial; of no account: as, it is indifferent which road we take.
  • Regarded without difference of feeling; not exciting special interest; uninteresting.
  • Falling short of any standard of excellence; of common or mediocre quality or kind; only passable or tolerable; ordinary.
  • In biology, undifferentiated; primitive; common; not specialized.
  • n. One who is indifferent or apathetic.
  • n. That which is indifferent or an object of indifference; that which affords no decisive ground of choice.

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

  • adj. having only a limited ability to react chemically; chemically inactive
  • adj. being neither good nor bad
  • adj. marked by no especial liking or dislike or preference for one thing over another
  • adj. fairly poor to not very good
  • adj. characterized by a lack of partiality
  • adj. neither too great nor too little
  • adj. (often followed by `to') lacking importance; not mattering one way or the other
  • adj. showing no care or concern in attitude or action
  • adj. marked by a lack of interest
  • adj. (usually followed by `to') unwilling or refusing to pay heed


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin indifferēns, indifferent- : in-, not; see in-1 + differēns, different; see different.


  • IV. i.93 (416,7) [garters of an indifferent knit] What is the sense of this I know not, unless it means, that their _garters_ should be _fellows_; _indifferent_, or _not different_, one from the other.

    Notes to Shakespeare — Volume 01: Comedies

  • For there being, says he, in Nature some things good, some things bad, and some things between them both, which we call indifferent; there is no man but would rather have the good than the indifferent, and the indifferent than the bad.

    Essays and Miscellanies

  • The PAC also expressed concern about what it termed the indifferent manner in which the national and provincial departments of safety and security were treating the "legitimate grievances" of police personnel in Transkei.

    ANC Daily News Briefing

  • "The Church cannot remain indifferent before the separation and divorce of couples", Pope Benedict cried, "before the break-up of homes and the repercussions on children, who need extremely precise points of reference for their instruction and education: in other words determined and confident parents who participate in their upbringing".

    Pope Benedict XVI

  • No one has been able to remain indifferent to such a monumental slip of the tongue.

    Yoani Sanchez: Fidel's Words Continue to Echo... Bitterly

  • One thing I guarantee: it will be hard to remain indifferent after meeting Anthony, Daisy, Emily, Francisco and Bianca.

    Jasmine Boussem: Is the Wait for 'Superman' Over?

  • The health care law, whether good, bad, or indifferent, is the law precisely because our constitution allows our representatives to behave undemocratically if they prefer.

    The Volokh Conspiracy » Originalism and Linguistic Questions

  • Most people remain indifferent to the process by which objects in our daily lives are manufactured, and have just as little curiosity about where things go once they are discarded.

    Spread ArtCulture: Interview with Edward Burtynsky: Photographing a Planet on the Edge

  • Like them, hate them, or remain indifferent to them, they have had a considerable impact on modern culture.

    In The News

  • As long as the American sheeple remain indifferent to events done around the world via their tax-appropriated money and continue to watch American Idol it will be more of the same.

    In these tough times at least people are still buying missiles « Blog


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  • Marcel Duchamp redefined art in the 20th century based on his indifference to objects

    January 1, 2012