decent

adjective
de·​cent | \ ˈdē-sᵊnt \

Definition of decent

1 archaic

b : well-formed : handsome
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 : marked by moral integrity, kindness, and goodwill hard-working and decent folks it's very decent of them to help

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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

Outlaw King does a decent job of showing these tactics, but doesn’t clearly show the funneling effect. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "'Outlaw King' vs. 'Braveheart': Which Movie Gets Scotland Right?," 13 Nov. 2018 In the 19th century, with the flourishing of industrialization and the enlightenment, a rise in nationalist and ethnic hatred presented Europe with two possible futures—and decent people stood by as the world descended into madness. Dani Dayan, WSJ, "Israel’s Heart Goes Out to Squirrel Hill," 28 Oct. 2018 Good, honest, decent people sit up here, and throughout the park. Mac Engel, star-telegram, "From the cheap seats: A thank you to fans who get the shaft," 10 June 2018 However, considering that the median tenure of American employees is 4.2 years per job, there’s a decent chance those two events might coincide at some point, and there’s no right or wrong way to handle it. Charlotte Cowles, The Cut, "7 Women on Getting Hired While Pregnant," 1 June 2018 For even more, living at home in Pike County — where a quarter of its housing units are heated by wood and 6 percent have no indoor plumbing — means commuting an hour or longer to nearby cities for decent-paying jobs. Chris Graves, Cincinnati.com, "Pike County: Death in the foothills," 15 May 2018 That theoretical device also needs a decent companion app, and Huawei Health just isn't that. Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica, "Huawei Watch GT review: When hardware and software don’t mesh," 16 Dec. 2018 Select business class fares are also decent, such as Newark to Athens starting at $3,999 round-trip, and Los Angeles to Mumbai starting at $4,799 round-trip. Bridget Hallinan, Condé Nast Traveler, "12 Days of Deals: Fly Emirates to Europe or Africa from $489 Round-Trip," 13 Dec. 2018 But there are a few decent options — with stronger safety features and less of a sketchy hookup culture happening — out there for the under-21 crowd. Kara Wahlgren, Seventeen, "The 7 Best Dating Apps for Teens," 13 Nov. 2018

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 1a

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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Statistics for decent

Last Updated

9 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for decent

The first known use of decent was in 1539

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More Definitions for decent

decent

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of decent

: polite, moral, and honest

: 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 \

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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with 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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