Definition of disobedient in English:



  • Refusing to obey rules or someone in authority.

    ‘Larry was stern with disobedient employees’
    • ‘The whole event existed somewhere between a mildly disobedient vigil, a human rights conference, and a counterculture festival.’
    • ‘Children cannot be shown as disobedient or in conflict with adults.’
    • ‘The warning letter is being sent out to persistently disobedient operators along with details of similar cases that resulted in people being jailed or fined.’
    • ‘I mean, that's the biggest way I was disobedient with my parents.’
    • ‘A four-year-old may be disobedient today, but it isn't necessarily clear what that means for the child's behaviour tomorrow.’
    • ‘A lot of the behaviour parents call naughty or disobedient is just a normal part of development.’
    • ‘Anita, a few years older, is everything Meena wants to be - the disobedient, uncompromising leader of a gang of girls.’
    • ‘Jacob looked utterly defeated at that moment, as if I were a disobedient child that refused to be punished.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, City Of York Council's Murray Rose has introduced a range of initiatives to improve the behaviour of the most disobedient pupils.’
    • ‘Although they still have some problems with disobedient clientele, they are seriously trying to comply with the law of the land.’
    • ‘Police worked overtime at the weekend, patrolling roads for close to 20 hours on Saturday in an effort to catch disobedient drivers.’
    • ‘Whether the country's powerful media outlets like it or not, disobedient voices have transformed the national debate.’
    • ‘My sisters always said that I am the disobedient and rebellious child, but did I ever care?’
    • ‘‘Hop in quickly,’ my pilot Adam hollered, as the crew struggled to hold the disobedient balloon.’
    • ‘My brother describes me as constitutionally disobedient.’
    • ‘It begins with a character named Zoe who decries the practice of rewarding punctuality while punishing those who are late or disobedient.’
    • ‘In it, a mischievous and disobedient kitten, Tom, gets lost in the hidden places of ‘an old, old house, full of cupboards and passages’.’
    • ‘He ordered his followers to abstain from violence, and let the world see the brutality of the British empire on the peaceful yet disobedient Indians.’
    • ‘With the day progressing and the sun beating down relentlessly, the animals became increasingly irritable and even disobedient.’
    • ‘Very often such limitations take the form of disobedient opposition to the rules.’
    insubordinate, unruly, wayward, errant, badly behaved, disorderly, delinquent, disruptive, troublesome, rebellious, defiant, mutinous, recalcitrant, refractory, uncooperative, non-compliant, wilful, unbiddable, intractable, obstreperous, awkward, difficult, perverse, contrary
    View synonyms


Late Middle English: from Old French desobedient, based on Latin oboedient- ‘obeying’ (see obedient).