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noun qui·et \ˈkwī-ət\

Simple Definition of quiet

  • : the quality or state of being quiet or calm

Full Definition of quiet

  1. :  the quality or state of being quiet (see 2quiet):  tranquillity

on the quiet
  1. :  in a secretive manner :  in secret

Examples of quiet

  1. My hostess told me she had some records I might like to hear and she called for quiet in the room. People sat down on the floor in groups, sharing bottles of wine and slivovitz. The host put the record on a windup record player and Lester Young's saxophone yowled out of the silence. —Maya Angelou, Gourmet, November 2002

  2. When my parents needed peace and quiet, they didn't put me in front of the television to watch a “Baby Einstein” video; they plopped me in a chair to watch my mom do housework or cook. —Robb Moretti, Newsweek, 5 Aug. 2002

  3. the quiet of a wooded trail

  4. Can I have some quiet here? I'm trying to study.

  5. I need a little peace and quiet.

Origin of quiet

Middle English, from Anglo-French quiete, Latin quiet-, quies rest, quiet — more at while

First Known Use: 14th century

Rhymes with quiet



adjective qui·et \ˈkwī-ət\

Simple Definition of quiet

  • : making very little noise

  • : not talking

  • : tending not to talk very much

Full Definition of quiet

  1. 1 a :  marked by little or no motion or activity :  calm <a quiet sea> b :  gentle, easygoing <a quiet temperament> c :  not interfered with <quiet reading> d :  enjoyed in peace and relaxation <a quiet cup of tea>

  2. 2 a :  free from noise or uproar :  still b :  unobtrusive, conservative <quiet clothes>

  3. 3 :  secluded <a quiet nook>

qui·et·ly adverb
qui·et·ness noun

Examples of quiet

  1. Breakfast at the Royal Bombay Yacht Club, a members-only institution founded in the city now called Mumbai in 1846 by British colonial officers, is a meal of quiet elegance. The second-story veranda looks out over a small garden and, beyond that, the Gateway of India and the Taj Mahal Hotel. Outside is the tumult of horse-drawn carriages, touts, and taxis. Inside is peaceful stillness, broken only by the sounds of crunched-on toast and rustling newspapers. —Lyla Bavadam, Saveur, October 2008

  2. One change I notice is that I get sleepy earlier than I used to, sometimes by 8:30 or 9 if I am having a quiet evening at home. —Andrew Weil, Time, 17 Oct. 2005

  3. I interviewed Virginia, who is totally blind, in a small local library. Walking with her guide dog, this young-looking woman arrived soon after I came in. We found a quiet corner to sit and talk while her dog settled beside her chair. At forty-three, Virginia was used to telling her story and found time for our interview in her busy travel schedule. She had just returned from San Francisco where she had spoken at the California Academy of Sciences and was about to leave for Montreal, Canada, to conduct workshops in diversity awareness. —Mary Grimley Mason, Working Against Odds, 2004

  4. Attributing their behaviors to their personal dispositions, we decide Julie is shy and Jack is outgoing. Because people do have enduring personality traits, such attributions are sometimes valid. However, we often overestimate the influence of personality and underestimate the influence of situations. In class, Jack may be as quiet as Julie. Catch Julie at a party and you may hardly recognize your quiet classmate. —David G. Myers, Psychology, 2001

  5. the quiet hum of the refrigerator

  6. He spoke in a very quiet voice.

  7. Surprisingly, the class was quiet.

  8. He's a very quiet person.

  9. She has a quiet disposition.

  10. During the morning, business was quiet.

  11. Some days at the store are quieter than others.

  12. a quiet stretch of road

  13. He led a quiet life.

Origin of quiet

Middle English, from Middle French quiete, from Latin quietus, from past participle of quiescere

First Known Use: 14th century



adverb qui·et \ˈkwī-ət\

Definition of quiet

  1. :  in a quiet manner <an engine that runs quiet>

Examples of quiet

  1. <lie quiet and no one will guess you're hiding under the bed>

Origin of quiet

(see 2quiet)

First Known Use: 1573



verb qui·et \ˈkwī-ət\

Simple Definition of quiet

  • : to make (someone or something) quieter, calmer, or less intense

Full Definition of quiet

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to cause to be quiet :  calm

  3. 2 :  to make secure by freeing from dispute or question <quiet title to a property>

  4. intransitive verb
  5. :  to become quiet —usually used with down

qui·et·er noun

Examples of quiet

  1. Clemens had few questions to answer about Piazza. The beanball and broken bat from 2000, and the Mets' tepid retaliation last season, were memories. And since Clemens recorded his 300th victory on June 13, the buzz around him has quieted. —Tyler Kepner, New York Times, 29 June 2003

  2. When she walked down the hall past his classroom, the sounds of chaos came over the frosted-glass pane above the door. She had taken to making random visits; the sight of her in the doorway quieted the kids. —Mary Gordon, Atlantic, May 1999

  3. Even with that, Presser was so scared that he fled to Florida and moved from hotel to hotel till the gang war quieted down, with his side on top. —A. H. Raskin New York Times Book Review, 10 Dec. 1989

  4. <the museum docent told the rowdy youngsters to quiet down for the tour>

  5. <quiet a crying toddler with candy>

Origin of quiet

Middle English, from Late Latin quietare to set free, to calm, from Latin quietus

First Known Use: 14th century

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February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

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