demeanor

noun
de·​mean·​or | \di-ˈmē-nər \

Definition of demeanor 

: behavior toward others : outward manner

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Synonyms for demeanor

Synonyms

actions, address, bearing, behavior, comportment, conduct, deportment, geste (also gest) [archaic]

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Choose the Right Synonym for demeanor

bearing, deportment, demeanor, mien, manner, carriage mean the outward manifestation of personality or attitude. bearing is the most general of these words but now usually implies characteristic posture. a woman of regal bearing deportment suggests actions or behavior as formed by breeding or training. your deportment was atrocious demeanor suggests one's attitude toward others as expressed in outward behavior. the haughty demeanor of the headwaiter mien is a literary term referring both to bearing and demeanor. a mien of supreme self-satisfaction manner implies characteristic or customary way of moving and gesturing and addressing others. the imperious manner of a man used to giving orders carriage applies chiefly to habitual posture in standing or walking. the kind of carriage learned at boarding school

Did You Know?

There's a long trail from Latin minari (which means "to threaten" and has been connected to the threatening cries of cattle drivers) to English demeanor. Along the way, we first encounter Latin minare; it means "to drive" and was once used specifically of driving animals for herding. From there, the path leads us to Anglo-French, where we pass by mener (to lead) and then demener (to conduct). Next comes Middle English demenen and then Modern English demean, both meaning "to conduct (oneself) in a certain manner." And, finally, we take one last step, and add the suffix -or to demean to get demeanor.

Examples of demeanor in a Sentence

Staffs like the one at Veritas have come a long way from the days when sommeliers … intimidated diners with their overbearing demeanor and French accents. Food & Wine, September 2002 Sam himself, a quiet young man with a rather shy demeanor, was somewhat bemused by all this attention. — Lola Oberman, Bird Watcher's Digest, November/December 1994 the director of the opera company has a haughty demeanor that can be irritating
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Recent Examples on the Web

Although John's likable demeanor is very different from Castle's arrogant attitude, fans are absolutely loving Fillion in this role—and many Twitter users took to the platform to show their appreciation for LAPD's newest officer. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Nathan Fillion's New Show 'The Rookie' Just Premiered and Fans Are Losing It," 17 Oct. 2018 At just 6 years old, Lila’s strong character, demeanor and great beauty was already very apparent. Jenna Rosenstein, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Moss's Daughter Lila Just Landed Her First Beauty Contract," 4 Oct. 2018 His outburst is a far cry from his usual happy-go-lucky demeanor. Eileen Reslen, Good Housekeeping, "The Important Things You Missed During 'This Is Us' Last Night," 3 Oct. 2018 Swartz’s confidently calm demeanor and obvious talent appealed to Williams, and an internship was offered. Steven Stolman, ELLE Decor, "How Elizabeth Swartz Rose From Intern to Partner at Bunny Williams," 14 Aug. 2018 Reuters That coarse demeanor may explain why he was briefly demoted to Colonel-General and then reinstated as a four-star general in 2012. Charlie Campbell / Beijing, Time, "Who Is Kim Yong Chol? Meet Kim Jong Un's Ever-Present Right-Hand Man," 28 May 2018 In person, Phillips’s demeanor gives little indication of his past. David Sturm, Howard County Times, "The Comeback Kid," 24 May 2018 He was known among Disney fans for his smile and friendly demeanor. Dewayne Bevil, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Richard Gerth, greeter at Disney's Grand Floridian, has died," 7 June 2018 However, when Steele argued that Cosby’s bail should be revoked, the comedian’s demeanor changed. Ray Boyd, Philly.com, "Bill Cosby found guilty in sexual assault trial, Rep. Brady introduces bill to prevent family's deportation | Morning Newsletter," 27 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'demeanor.' 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 demeanor

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for demeanor

demean entry 1 — see demean entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near demeanor

demd

deme

demean

demeanor

demeanour

de medietate linguae

demegoric

Statistics for demeanor

Last Updated

15 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for demeanor

The first known use of demeanor was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for demeanor

demeanor

noun

English Language Learners Definition of demeanor

: a person's appearance and behavior : the way someone seems to be to other people

demeanor

noun
de·​mean·​or | \di-ˈmē-nər \

Kids Definition of demeanor

: outward manner or behavior a gentle demeanor

demeanor

noun
de·​mea·​nor | \di-ˈmē-nər \

Legal Definition of demeanor 

: outward manner : way of conducting oneself

Note: A jury may consider a witness's demeanor on the stand in determining the witness's credibility.

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