decent

adjective
de·​cent | \ ˈdē-sᵊnt How to pronounce decent (audio) \

Definition of decent

1 : marked by moral integrity, kindness, and goodwill hard-working and decent folks it's very decent of them to help
2a : conforming to standards of propriety, good taste, or morality decent behavior
b : modestly clothed
3 : free from immodesty or obscenity decent language
4 : fairly good : adequate, satisfactory decent wages
5 archaic
b : well-formed : handsome

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Other Words from decent

decently adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for decent

chaste, pure, modest, decent mean free from all taint of what is lewd or salacious. chaste primarily implies a refraining from acts or even thoughts or desires that are not virginal or not sanctioned by marriage vows. they maintained chaste relations pure differs from chaste in implying innocence and absence of temptation rather than control of one's impulses and actions. the pure of heart modest and decent apply especially to deportment and dress as outward signs of inward chastity or purity. preferred more modest swimsuits decent people didn't go to such movies

Examples of decent in a Sentence

Not long afterward, his father's health starts to fail. Mrs. Queenan has kicked him out, and he's landed in a flophouse. When word reaches Joe, he takes out his checkbook and moves his father into a decent apartment. — James McManus, New York Times Book Review, 26 Apr. 2009 In a whiney, rambling speech at his sentencing he took a page from the script of the earlier case, once again portraying himself as a flawed but decent man unfairly caught up in circumstances. — Bill Hewitt et al., People, 22 Dec. 2008 Tommy Railles, the doctor's boy. Just a great kid. Smart at school, a decent athlete, great with the girls, wonderful with older people. — Ward Just, Forgetfulness, (2006) 2007 The next time an overly friendly blond sidles up in a crowded bar and asks you to order her a brand-name martini, or a cheery tourist couple wonder whether you can take their picture with their sleek new camera-in-a-cell phone, you might want to think twice. There's a decent chance that these strangers are pitchmen in disguise, paid to oh-so-subtly pique your interest in their product. — Paul McFedries, Word Spy, 2004 I don't understand how so decent a person could be involved with this kind of crime. He is a decent guy who would help anyone in need. You need to do the decent thing and tell her what happened. Are there any decent schools in that area? I've got to get some decent clothes.
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Recent Examples on the Web Dallas has actually done a decent job of building up its depth at corner in the past few years. Tim Bielik, cleveland, "2021 NFL mock draft 1.0: How would a draft with no college football in 2020 look?," 11 Aug. 2020 Masks do a decent job at keeping the virus from spreading into the environment, but if an infected person is inside a building, inevitably some virus will escape into the air. Shelly Miller, The Conversation, "How to use ventilation and air filtration to prevent the spread of coronavirus indoors," 10 Aug. 2020 The Reds certainly can get to the dance and get a decent seed. John Fay, The Enquirer, "Despite the so-so start, Cincinnati Reds are in good shape for a postseason berth," 10 Aug. 2020 This super-likable chap was the halfway leader, faded to finish at T17, but with a decent 69 Sunday. Scott Ostler, SFChronicle.com, "PGA Championship at Harding Park brought out golf’s characters," 9 Aug. 2020 And his only decent curveball hit Colin Moran in the foot. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, "Spencer Turnbull was struggling against the Pirates. Here's how he fixed his problem," 9 Aug. 2020 Her job as public housing program coordinator pays a decent salary and can be done from home. Gwynn Guilford And Luis Melgar, WSJ, "Coronavirus Heightens Housing Insecurity for Black and Hispanic Populations," 9 Aug. 2020 Man’s inhumanity to his fellow man is familiar territory for Burke, who has an uncanny knack for explaining how easily otherwise decent people can be seduced into serving sinister forces. Chris Gray, ExpressNews.com, "Review: Evil is afoot in James Lee Burke’s bayou country," 7 Aug. 2020 Many positions at the USPS do not require a college degree but still pay well, offer benefits and a federal pension, as well as the opportunity to earn decent overtime. Karen Ho, Quartz, "Cuts to the US Postal Service will hurt Black people the most," 7 Aug. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'decent.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of decent

1539, in the meaning defined at sense 5a

History and Etymology for decent

Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin decent-, decens, present participle of decēre to be fitting; akin to Latin decus honor, dignus worthy, Greek dokein to seem, seem good

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Time Traveler for decent

Time Traveler

The first known use of decent was in 1539

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Statistics for decent

Last Updated

14 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Decent.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/decent. Accessed 15 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for decent

decent

adjective
How to pronounce decent (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of decent

: polite, moral, and honest
somewhat informal : showing kindness : seeming to care about the feelings or problems of other people
: good enough but not the best : adequate or acceptable

decent

adjective
de·​cent | \ ˈdē-sᵊnt How to pronounce decent (audio) \

Kids Definition of decent

1 : meeting an accepted standard of good manners or morality Do the decent thing and confess.
2 : being moral and good She was raised by decent folks.
3 : not offensive decent language
4 : fairly good decent grades

Other Words from decent

decently adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on decent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for decent

Spanish Central: Translation of decent

Nglish: Translation of decent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of decent for Arabic Speakers

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