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[in-di-stingkt] /ˌɪn dɪˈstɪŋkt/
not distinct; not clearly marked or defined:
indistinct markings.
not clearly distinguishable or perceptible, as to the eye, ear, or mind:
He heard an indistinct muttering.
not distinguishing clearly:
After the accident he suffered from indistinct vision and faulty hearing.
Origin of indistinct
1520-30; < Latin indistinctus. See in-3, distinct
Related forms
indistinctly, adverb
indistinctness, noun
2. blurred, clouded, dim. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for indistinct
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The figure of the girl in the prow of the hindmost boat was blurred and indistinct.

    The Heart of Unaga Ridgwell Cullum
  • Vague, indistinct to ourselves, unbounded by hope or remembrance.

    Poems William D. Howells
  • Except for a few detached details the surroundings of that journey remained vague, clouded, indistinct.

    Beth Norvell Randall Parrish
  • It left in the paper an indistinct impression resembling a fabric.

    Why Bewick Succeeded Jacob Kainen
  • In his first forensic arguments his rapid utterance was as indistinct as if he had mush in his mouth, old men have told me.

    The Brothers' War John Calvin Reed
  • First, it was only an indistinct murmur, then came words and fragments of phrases.

    Doctor Pascal Emile Zola
  • In making her farewell speech, she muttered some indistinct apology for the visit which she had been bold enough to make.

    The Claverings Anthony Trollope
British Dictionary definitions for indistinct


incapable of being clearly distinguished, as by the eyes, ears, or mind; not distinct
Derived Forms
indistinctly, adverb
indistinctness, noun
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 indistinct

c.1400 (implied in indistinctly "equally, alike"), from Latin indistinctus "not distinct, confused," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + distinctus (see distinct). Related: Indistinctly; indistinctness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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