Definition of incoherent in English:



  • 1(of spoken or written language) expressed in an incomprehensible or confusing way; unclear.

    ‘he screamed some incoherent threat’
    • ‘He just kept shivering and muttering incoherent fragments of distorted English.’
    • ‘The letter is long, rambling, abusive and incoherent.’
    • ‘Natural language is incoherent, and its underlying sensible structure is that of an infinite hierarchy of levels.’
    • ‘The incoherent ramblings of a man who spent a little too much time drinking the Ted Rall flavored kool-aid?’
    • ‘Much of the rest of the e-mail is rambling, incoherent, badly written, nonsensical, fanciful, and downright unbelievable.’
    • ‘Soon after, they found Hazel sitting by a tree, muttering incoherent threats.’
    • ‘Why do some actors write hilariously incoherent and over-the-top political commentary?’
    • ‘Well first of all I believe we have to change this language, which is incoherent.’
    • ‘There is acute onset of delusions, hallucinations, incomprehensible or incoherent speech, or any combination of these.’
    • ‘This is easy to believe about one of the funniest comedians around… a man who has raised the bar for incoherent muttering and elevated rambling to a high art.’
    • ‘I'm very grateful that these incoherent ramblings find some resonance out there - we can all do with some validation can't we?’
    • ‘Randolph later wrote an incoherent apology for his ‘diabolical, barbarous and wicked’ behaviour.’
    • ‘Their atrophied sense of integrity and largely incoherent rambling suggested that this would prove a far more difficult task than I first imagined.’
    • ‘As I noted in a previous post on this subject, the disclaimer that the school board has mandated be read by the science teachers is incredibly incoherent and confused.’
    • ‘Williams subsided over his beer, muttering some kind of incoherent threat, as Leslie smiled.’
    • ‘At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought.’
    • ‘Madmen are of some nation, and their language, however incoherent in its words, has always the coherence of syllabification.’
    • ‘Instead of boring you with one of my long, incoherent ramblings, I have decided to cut them up into shorter, incoherent ramblings, for your pleasure.’
    • ‘Clearly unhappy with the attention he was receiving around that time, he gave a number of rambling, incoherent interviews that hinted at some of the darker recesses of his psyche.’
    • ‘David muttered something incoherent and rude and scrambled to his feet, fumbling for the sword.’
    unclear, confused, muddled, unintelligible, incomprehensible, hard to follow, disjointed, disconnected, unconnected, disordered, mixed up, garbled, jumbled, scrambled
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    1. 1.1 (of a person) unable to speak intelligibly.
      ‘he was incoherent with sentiment’
      • ‘The following morning Miss Cadden's friends believed she had gone out to an exam and she was not seen until lunchtime, by which point she was rambling, incoherent and unable to help herself.’
      • ‘The report shows that he was incoherent and confused at the interview.’
      • ‘She was incoherent and hadn't answered any questions.’
      • ‘He is too incoherent to tell and we leave him squatting outside the entrance to accident and emergency, smoking a roll-up and gobbing more blood on to the ground.’
      • ‘The rest were pretty much incoherent whenever they spoke.’
      • ‘The transcript later showed him to be confused and incoherent.’
      • ‘She knew she was rambling; she knew she was slightly incoherent; she didn't care.’
      • ‘So tepid arguments between mumbling, incoherent, misinformed gentlemen speckle the news programmes.’
      • ‘She's incoherent, crying, sobbing, and there is not a person in the room who doesn't know that it is all an act.’
      • ‘It's a fairly minor wound but he's quite incoherent.’
      • ‘I am not usually as rambling and incoherent as I sound.’
      • ‘Although he is verbally incoherent due to heavy medication, John has worked solidly for the last 10 years on this collection of abstract paintings.’
      • ‘But over time he is incoherent and contradictory.’
      • ‘Though he was incoherent and loud, at times my impression was that he was not psychotic or manic.’
      • ‘Of all his family, he is the incompetent, incoherent, emotional one.’
      • ‘We're not actually sure why they bothered, though: most branches of Tescos have their doorways cluttered by hordes of incoherent young people in ugly clothes getting in people's way.’
      • ‘This encouraged speculation that a man so apparently incoherent couldn't have written his own lyrics.’
      • ‘The 25-year-old was described as confused and incoherent during his interrogation.’
      • ‘I'm incoherent and sad and inarticulate and outraged.’
      • ‘The events of the passed few hours had left her confused and incoherent.’
      delirious, raving, babbling, hysterical, irrational
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    2. 1.2 Not logical or internally consistent.
      ‘the film is ideologically incoherent’
      • ‘But taken to its logical limit, the aim is incoherent.’
      • ‘He argues, surprisingly, that the notion of enforcing God's law is logically incoherent.’
      • ‘Of course, that includes your ‘base’ here in the US too so you'll have to pardon us for our consistency and ask yourselves why we find you incoherent on this matter.’
      • ‘At least in this case, the valid phrases are much commoner than the logically incoherent ones.’
      • ‘One of its key arguments is internally incoherent.’
      • ‘Remember, that chapter is written straight from his inner subconscious, so naturally, it'd all be a babble of incoherent thoughts.’
      • ‘We didn't really take it to its logical conclusion, so it's sprawling and incoherent and needs working with some scissors.’
      • ‘Darin was right; I did feel better after babbling my incoherent misgivings.’
      • ‘I find him very inconsistent and intellectually his policy positions are often quite incoherent.’
      • ‘The constant drive to divide sex into various incoherent binaries is intellectually specious, politically dubious, and completely unsexy.’
      • ‘I have not found that the ordinary logical mind has in either ancient or modern literature been able to find them internally incoherent.’
      • ‘In short it's a logically incoherent mishmash that seems to rumble along despite it's evident inconsistencies and flaws.’
      • ‘The thought that the process theory is logically incoherent comes from two sources.’
      • ‘White announces himself in favor of irrational and incoherent opinions.’
      • ‘Given the facts in this case, the jury's verdict is logically incoherent.’
      • ‘Moreover the capital controversy revealed that important aspects of aggregate neoclassical theory were logically incoherent.’
      • ‘But the aim of fusion is both internally incoherent and impossible.’
      • ‘A law can do much practical good even if it is logically incoherent, and the ADA certainly falls in that category.’
      • ‘Still, in rebutting the charge that the Trinity is against reason, the philosopher may offer conceptual clarity to the skeptic and show that the doctrine is not incoherent or irrational.’
      • ‘How is any of it illogical or internally incoherent?’
  • 2Physics
    (of waves) having no definite or stable phase relationship.

    • ‘In particular, in this work, neutron elastic incoherent scattering was utilized to study the dynamics of the lipoplexes as a function of DNA concentration.’
    • ‘Similarly, incoherent quasielastic neutron scattering experiments provide information on the mean-square displacements of the hydrogen atoms.’
    • ‘We present elastic and inelastic incoherent neutron scattering data from a series of trehalose glasses diluted with glycerol.’
    • ‘This means that coherent spin waves will appear below the temperature at which magnetic ordering sets in, while a transverse incoherent component will exist above.’
    • ‘Similarly, the blue structural colors of avian skin were long hypothesized to be produced by incoherent Rayleigh or Tyndall scattering.’