Definition of demeanor
: behavior toward others : outward manner
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>
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.
Origin and Etymology of demeanor
1demean —see 1demean
First Known Use: 15th century
Synonym Discussion of demeanor
DEMEANOR Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of demeanor for English Language Learners
: a person's appearance and behavior : the way someone seems to be to other people
DEMEANOR Defined for Kids
Definition of demeanor for Students
: outward manner or behavior <a gentle demeanor>
Legal Definition of demeanor
: outward manner : way of conducting oneself
Additional Notes on demeanor
A jury may consider a witness's demeanor on the stand in determining the witness's credibility.
Seen and Heard
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