demeanor

noun
de·​mean·​or | \ di-ˈmē-nər How to pronounce demeanor (audio) \

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

His singing is useful and his demeanor is that of the American Candide. San Diego Union-Tribune, "From the Archives: 35 years ago ‘Big River’ started flowing in La Jolla," 25 June 2019 His demeanor is really good in dealing with these people. Renee Dudley, ProPublica, "The Trade Secret Firms That Promised High-Tech Ransomware Solutions Almost Always Just Pay the Hackers," 15 May 2019 Besides being a crafty hitmaker, Post Malone’s playful demeanor has become a huge staple in his burgeoning career. Carl Lamarre, Billboard, "Post Malone Channels Migos to Sing 'Old McDonald Had a Farm' on 'Good Mythical Morning': Exclusive," 30 Jan. 2018 At a follow up meeting in February, the vice principal’s demeanor changed negatively, according to the complaint. Diana Lambert And Anita Chabria, sacbee, "These girls say a classmate’s racist taunts drove them from elite college prep program," 24 Jan. 2018 That would let adjudicators assess the demeanor and credibility of witnesses. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Judges for Betsy DeVos," 30 Nov. 2018 Here's a snippet of the latest episode: BRIAN STRAUS: The demeanor of the two (coaches) today, Deschamps and Martinez, in a lot of ways to me reflects their teams. SI.com, "World Cup Daily Podcast: How France, Belgium Mirror Their Managers," 9 July 2018 Reich is a calming influence with the perfect demeanor for a young team. Stephen Holder, USA TODAY, "Colts training camp questions: Can Andrew Luck, Frank Reich spark young team?," 6 July 2018 Düsseldorf’s drizzly skies, the direct demeanor of the Germans and the difficulty in making German friends — even after learning the language — can be a struggle. Liz Alderman, New York Times, "Greece May Be Turning a Corner. Greeks Who Fled Are Staying Put.," 5 June 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

see demean entry 2

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Statistics for demeanor

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

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 How to pronounce demeanor (audio) \

Kids Definition of demeanor

: outward manner or behavior a gentle demeanor

demeanor

noun
de·​mea·​nor | \ di-ˈmē-nər How to pronounce demeanor (audio) \

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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More from Merriam-Webster on demeanor

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with demeanor

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for demeanor

Spanish Central: Translation of demeanor

Nglish: Translation of demeanor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of demeanor for Arabic Speakers

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