from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Having no particular interest or concern; apathetic.
  • adjective Having no marked feeling for or against.
  • adjective Not mattering one way or the other; unimportant; immaterial.
  • adjective Characterized by a lack of partiality; unbiased.
  • adjective Being neither too much nor too little; moderate.
  • adjective Being neither good nor bad; mediocre: synonym: average.
  • adjective Not active or involved; neutral.
  • adjective Biology Undifferentiated, as cells or tissue.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • 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.
  • noun One who is indifferent or apathetic.
  • noun That which is indifferent or an object of indifference; that which affords no decisive ground of choice.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adverb obsolete To a moderate degree; passably; tolerably.
  • adjective Not making a difference; having no influence or preponderating weight; involving no preference, concern, or attention; of no account; without significance or importance.
  • adjective Neither particularly good, not very bad; of a middle state or quality; passable; mediocre.
  • adjective Not inclined to one side, party, or choice more than to another; neutral; impartial.
  • adjective Feeling no interest, anxiety, or care, respecting anything; unconcerned; inattentive; apathetic; heedless.
  • adjective (Law) Free from bias or prejudice; impartial; unbiased; disinterested.
  • adjective (Anat.) the primitive, embryonic, undifferentiated tissue, before conversion into connective, muscular, nervous, or other definite tissue.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

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

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

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



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

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

    January 1, 2012