9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[ih-mawr-uh l, ih-mor-] /ɪˈmɔr əl, ɪˈmɒr-/
violating moral principles; not conforming to the patterns of conduct usually accepted or established as consistent with principles of personal and social ethics.
licentious or lascivious.
Origin of immoral
1650-60; im-2 + moral
Related forms
immorally, adverb
bad, wicked, dissolute, dissipated, profligate. Immoral, abandoned, depraved describe one who makes no attempt to curb self-indulgence. Immoral, referring to conduct, applies to one who acts contrary to or does not obey or conform to standards of morality; it may also mean licentious and perhaps dissipated. Abandoned, referring to condition, applies to one hopelessly, and usually passively, sunk in wickedness and unrestrained appetites. Depraved, referring to character, applies to one who voluntarily seeks evil and viciousness. Immoral, amoral, nonmoral, and unmoral are sometimes confused with one another. Immoral means not moral and connotes evil or licentious behavior. Amoral, nonmoral, and unmoral, virtually synonymous although the first is by far the most common form, mean utterly lacking in morals (either good or bad), neither moral nor immoral. However, since, in some contexts, there is a stigma implicit in a complete lack of morals, being amoral, nonmoral, or unmoral is sometimes considered just as reprehensible as being immoral. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for immoral
  • But opponents say such research is immoral, because embryos must be destroyed to obtain their cells.
  • Unfortunately much of it is discredited by small minds and decadent societies that wish to live in immoral ways.
  • We could isolate children from adults and each other, eliminating the risk of immoral acts entirely.
  • Whether the technology is illegal or immoral or not is beside the point.
  • It is immoral to accept tuition money from a student who is bound to fail due to lack of intellectual ability.
  • Counter hacking is as illegal and immoral as hacking.
  • It seems that much of the objection to ethanol production stems from the idea that it is immoral to burn food for fuel.
  • But some moral philosophers posit that this is not harmful or immoral, and should be socially accepted.
  • Greed is the lust for money that causes one to do immoral things to get it.
  • We all should now wake up to the fact that the regimes thus established are illegal, immoral and illegitimate.
British Dictionary definitions for immoral


transgressing accepted moral rules; corrupt
sexually dissolute; profligate or promiscuous
unscrupulous or unethical: immoral trading
tending to corrupt or resulting from corruption: an immoral film, immoral earnings
Derived Forms
immorally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for immoral

1650s, from assimilated form of in- (1) "not" + moral (adj.). Related: Immorally.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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