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[non-kuh n-fawr-mi-tee] /ˌnɒn kənˈfɔr mɪ ti/
failure or refusal to conform, as with established customs, attitudes, or ideas.
lack of conformity or agreement.
(often initial capital letter) refusal to conform to the Church of England.
Geology. an unconformity that separates crystalline rocks, either igneous or metamorphic, from sedimentary rocks.
Origin of nonconformity
1610-20; non- + conformity Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for non-conformity
Historical Examples
  • He removed to Boston in May, 1644, being probably one of those who were driven away from Virginia for non-conformity.

  • The foibles of their youth are still to be traced in faulting and non-conformity.

    In the Open Stanton Davis Kirkham
  • Many able pastors had been deprived in England for non-conformity, and they had to choose between silence or exile.

  • He was ordered before the Bishop, Dec. 12, 1631, to answer for his non-conformity.

  • It is at most a non-conformity to an impersonal, mechanically determined, ongoing nature.

    Theoretical Ethics Milton Valentine
  • He told them he would have none of their non-conformity, he would "make them conform or harry them out of the land."

    The Greatest English Classic Cleland Boyd McAfee
  • Prosecutions for non-conformity were enforced with the utmost severity.

  • Virtue in relation to opinion consists neither in conformity nor non-conformity, but in sincere beliefs, and in living up to them.

    The Principles Of Secularism George Jacob Holyoake
  • But he was not above a year here until the bishop of Down suspended him and Mr. Blair for non-conformity.

  • He exacted a rigid conformity to his rules of non-conformity and his scepticism had the absolute accent of a dogma.

    The Reef Edith Wharton
British Dictionary definitions for non-conformity


failure or refusal to conform
absence of agreement or harmony
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 non-conformity

also nonconformity, 1610s, coined in English from non- + conformity. Originally of Church of England clergymen who refused to conform on certain ceremonies.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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