not proper; not strictly belonging, applicable, correct, etc.; erroneous: He drew improper conclusions from the scant evidence.
not in accordance with propriety of behavior, manners, etc.: improper conduct at a funeral.
unsuitable or inappropriate, as for the purpose or occasion: improper attire for a formal dance.
abnormal or irregular: improper functioning of the speech mechanism.

1535–45; < Latin improprius. See im-2, proper

improperly, adverb
improperness, noun

1–3. inapplicable, unsuited, unfit. 2. indecorous. Improper, indecent, unbecoming, unseemly are applied to that which is unfitting or not in accordance with propriety. Improper has a wide range, being applied to whatever is not suitable or fitting, and often specifically to what does not conform to the standards of conventional morality: improper diet; improper behavior in church; improper language. Indecent a strong word, is applied to what is offensively contrary to standards of propriety and especially of modesty: indecent behavior, literature. Unbecoming is applied to what is especially unfitting in the person concerned: conduct unbecoming a minister. Unseemly is applied to whatever is unfitting or improper under the circumstances: unseemly mirth.

1, 3. fitting, suitable. 2. proper. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To improper
World English Dictionary
improper (ɪmˈprɒpə)
1.  lacking propriety; not seemly or fitting
2.  unsuitable for a certain use or occasion; inappropriate: an improper use for a tool
3.  irregular or abnormal

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

1531 (implied in improperly) "not true," from Fr. impropre (14c.), from L. improprius, from in "not" + proprius (see proper). Meaning "not suited, unfit" is from 1570; that of "not in accordance with good manners, modesty, decency" is from 1739.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Lawyers have a right and sometimes an obligation to object when they believe
  something is improper.
It's not an easy task and many a hunter has spoiled the meat by a badly placed
  shot or improper gutting.
He was of opinion that it was improper, and that they were naturally unequal to
There are many other forms of invasion of privacy, such as blackmail and the
  improper use of your personal data.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature