Definition of impropriety in English:



  • [mass noun] Failure to observe standards of honesty or modesty; improper behaviour or character.

    ‘she was scandalized at the impropriety of the question’
    [count noun] ‘there are no demonstrable legal improprieties’
    • ‘There are no allegations of impropriety against any other individual.’
    • ‘But at no time whatsoever have I ever acted dishonestly or with conscious impropriety.’
    • ‘I think that so many of these contributions create the impression of impropriety and it taints all of us.’
    • ‘There should be no lingering questions, let alone any whiff of impropriety.’
    • ‘I think as the editorial in The Courier Mail said on Saturday, there have been veiled suggestions of impropriety.’
    • ‘The activist, whose daughter was a presiding officer for one polling station, has strenuously denied any impropriety.’
    • ‘None of the allegations related to financial impropriety or wilful misconduct.’
    • ‘You can see how the slightest impropriety would be pounced on as grounds for derision and exclusion.’
    • ‘The appearance of impropriety is not the same thing as impropriety and the two should not be confused.’
    • ‘Although none of this indicates any form of impropriety, it does illustrate the scale of the market and why many international investors are wary of it.’
    • ‘She seemed to have gentlemen admirers, though no impropriety was ever established.’
    • ‘In this case there was no impropriety by the defendants in the conduct of the litigation.’
    • ‘Wouldn't the government have acted had it been another kind of corruption like financial impropriety or something?’
    • ‘Rumours of financial impropriety began swirling around the association in the fall of 2003.’
    • ‘The plaintiffs' allegations against the defendant involve those of serious wrongdoing and impropriety.’
    • ‘The witness said he was not aware of any hint of anything improper or any impropriety in the granting of the licence.’
    • ‘It goes without saying that everyone involved in these cushy deals denies any impropriety.’
    • ‘The High Court found no impropriety or illegality in her dismissal.’
    • ‘With legal impropriety, the judge bullied the jury into a finding of guilty.’
    • ‘So, I read that he has been mired in accusations and allegations of corruption, sexual impropriety, and drug use.’
    wrongdoing, misconduct, dishonesty, corruption, unscrupulousness, illegitimacy, unprofessionalism, irregularity
    transgression, misdemeanour, offence, misdeed, improper act, sin, crime, felony
    View synonyms


Early 17th century (also in the sense ‘inaccuracy’): from French impropriété or Latin improprietas, from improprius (see improper).