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Not important; insignificant or petty.

un′im·por′tance n.


a lack of importance




  1. Brittle and meaningless as cocktail party patter —William Brammer
  2. His influence … it is like burning a … candle at Dover to show light at Calais —Samuel Johnson

    Had Johnson been an American living in America instead of an Englishman living in England, his comment on Thomas Sheridan’s influence on English literature might well have illustrated with “A candle in New York to show light in Boston.”

  3. Hollow as the (ghastly) amiabilities of a college reunion —Raymond M. Weaver
  4. Impact [of information] … as thin as gold —Raymond Chandler
  5. (About as) important as a game of golf to an astronomer —Anon
  6. Important as mathematics to an engineer —Anon
  7. Inconsequential … like the busy work that grade school teachers devise to keep children out of mischief —Ann Petry
  8. Insignifacnt as the canals of Mars —Frank Conroy
  9. Its loss would be incalculable … like losing the Mona Lisa —Dr. Paul Parks, New York Times, August 23, 1986 on potential death of Florida’s Lake Okeechobee
  10. Meaningful as love —Kenneth Patchen
  11. Meaningless, like publishing a book of your opinions with a vanity press —Scott Spencer
  12. Of no more importance than a flea or a louse —Boris Pasternak

    In the novel, Doctor Zhivago, a character uses this simile to compare a wife to workers.

  13. Seemed scarcely to concern us, like fairy tales or cautionary fables that are not to be taken literally or to heart —Joan Chase
  14. Shallow as a pie pan —Anon
  15. [A speech] shallow as time —Thomas Carlyle
  16. Uneventful as theory —A. R. Ammons
  17. Worthless as withered weeds —Emily Bronte
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.unimportance - the state of being humble and unimportantunimportance - the state of being humble and unimportant
obscurity - an obscure and unimportant standing; not well known; "he worked in obscurity for many years"
2.unimportance - the quality of not being important or worthy of noteunimportance - the quality of not being important or worthy of note
value - the quality (positive or negative) that renders something desirable or valuable; "the Shakespearean Shylock is of dubious value in the modern world"
inessentiality - not of basic importance
puniness, slightness, triviality, pettiness - the quality of being unimportant and petty or frivolous
insignificance - the quality of having little or no significance
importance - the quality of being important and worthy of note; "the importance of a well-balanced diet"


References in classic literature ?
Looking into Napoleon's eyes Prince Andrew thought of the insignificance of greatness, the unimportance of life which no one could understand, and the still greater unimportance of death, the meaning of which no one alive could understand or explain.
There is nothing certain, nothing at all except the unimportance of everything I understand, and the greatness of something incomprehensible but all-important.
If you have suffered your mind to dwell upon it for a single moment, try and remember the relative unimportance of such an amount when compared with a thousand guineas.
The move to join the ICC has little to do with the war crimes in Gaza, and much with Abbas' growing unimportance among his allies, but also his own people.
In a complex and crowded modern society, "oversight is essential for us to feel free" and "defining freedom by absence of authority is a formula for futility and unimportance.
He argued that the arguments of irrelevance and unimportance, which previously excused the lack of American-North African scholarship, are fallacious.
Despite the relative unimportance of Meg in the 'opera, mezzo Lauren Segal managed to equal the other women.
His ludicrous comments about the unimportance of the FA Cup were followed, predictably, by defeat at the hands of a Sheffield United team struggling to avoid relegation in League One.
But in so doing, we will learn the unimportance of our opinions in the light of the magnitude of the needs of our brothers and sisters.
Such sponsors thereby signal the relative unimportance of the games in their lists of priorities.
In a letter to clubs, reported by the League WeeKly newspaper, Lenagan claimed the policy review highlighted "the relative unimportance of the Super League clubs" but stopped short of calling for a breaKaway.
People's perception of unimportance resulted from a combination of direct treatment as such by the government, as well as indirect implication of it philosophically.