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used in a sentence
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Definition unable to communicate clearly (or to use words)

or (more rarely): a feeling or idea that is not expressed

The exact meaning of inarticulate depends upon its context. For example:
  • unable to find good words to express oneself — as in "She gets inarticulate when she's nervous."
  • verbally expressing a feeling without words — as in "She uttered an inarticulate cry of despair."
  • unable to make oneself heard and understood — as in "She mumbled inarticulately."
  • unable to speak — as in "She was inarticulate with rage."
  • a feeling or idea that is not expressed — as in "We shared an inarticulate fear."
  • inability to express or understand feelings or ideas — as in "She is emotionally inarticulate, " or "Her symphony is inarticulate."
  • She becomes inarticulate when she's nervous.
inarticulate = unable to express herself clearly
  • She seemed uninformed and inarticulate compared to her opponent in the debate.
  • inarticulate = unable to express oneself clearly
  • She said she had been inarticulate when she answered the question and that her critics are taking her answer out of context.
  • inarticulate = unable to find good words to express oneself
  • "We could be sort of..." Simon became inarticulate in his effort to express mankind's essential illness.
    William Golding  --  Lord of the Flies
  • inarticulate = at a loss for words
  • Her inarticulateness made us believe we were eloquent.
    Toni Morrison  --  The Bluest Eye
  • inarticulateness = inability to express himself clearly
    (Editor's note:  The suffix "-ness" converts an adjective to a noun that means state or degree of. This is the same pattern you see in words like darkness, kindness, and coolness.)
  • Harry uttered an inarticulate yell of rage: In that instant, he cared not whether he lived or died.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
  • inarticulate = verbally expressing a feeling without words
  • A prayer which was half an inarticulate apology to the boy flitted through his mind like a torn rag.
    Stephen King  --  The Shining
  • inarticulate = poorly expressed
  • My hair was sticking in fuzzy curls on my neck, and from the radio in the living room I could hear the inarticulate drone of the baseball game.
    Maureen Daly  --  Seventeenth Summer
  • inarticulate = with words that could not be understood
  • Oh, how one wishes sometimes to escape from the meaningless dullness of human eloquence, from all those sublime phrases, to take refuge in nature, apparently so inarticulate, or in the wordlessness of long, grinding labor, of sound sleep, of true music, or of a human understanding rendered speechless by emotion!
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • inarticulate = without words
  • Then the wail rose, remote and unearthly, and turned to an inarticulate gibbering.
    William Golding  --  Lord of the Flies
  • inarticulate = without words
  • He poured out on her the sum of all his inarticulate fury and aborted desires.
    Toni Morrison  --  The Bluest Eye
  • I murmured something inarticulate.
    Robert Penn Warren  --  All the King's Men
  • She lapsed into her inarticulate sounds, and unconsciously drew forth the article which she was fingering.
    George Eliot  --  Middlemarch
  • He danced and shouted a string of inarticulate words.
    Sherwood Anderson  --  The Egg
  • This is he; this helpless, inarticulately murmuring, wandering old man pointed out.
    Charles Dickens  --  A Tale of Two Cities
  • Reich shouted once... a hoarse, inarticulate yell of rage and fright.
    Alfred Bester  --  The Demolished Man
  • He seized the Bible with his rough, huge hands; twice he raised it inarticulate, and then fairly burst into words, with rude and awful eloquence.
    W. E. B. Du Bois  --  The Souls of Black Folk
  • By now inarticulate with sobs, Greta Ohlsson rose and groped her way towards the door.
    Agatha Christie  --  Murder On The Orient Express
  • Feebly, without arguments, with nothing to support him except his inarticulate horror of what O'Brien had said, he returned to the attack.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • How inarticulate can a person be?
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eldest

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