dip·lo·mat·ic | \ˌdi-plə-ˈma-tik \

Definition of diplomatic 

1a : paleographic

b : exactly reproducing the original a diplomatic edition

2 : of, relating to, or concerned with the art and practice of conducting negotiations between nations : of, relating to, or concerned with diplomacy or diplomats diplomatic relations

3 : employing tact and conciliation especially in situations of stress a diplomatic way to say no

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Other Words from diplomatic

diplomatically \-ti-k(ə-)lē \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for diplomatic


politic, tactful


gauche, impolitic, tactless, undiplomatic, untactful

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Choose the Right Synonym for diplomatic

suave, urbane, diplomatic, bland, smooth, politic mean pleasantly tactful and well-mannered. suave suggests a specific ability to deal with others easily and without friction. a suave public relations coordinator urbane implies high cultivation and poise coming from wide social experience. an urbane traveler diplomatic stresses an ability to deal with ticklish situations tactfully. a diplomatic negotiator bland emphasizes mildness of manner and absence of irritating qualities. a bland master of ceremonies smooth suggests often a deliberately assumed suavity. a smooth salesman politic implies shrewd as well as tactful and suave handling of people. a cunningly politic manager

Examples of diplomatic in a Sentence

Negotiators are working to restore full diplomatic relations. a diplomatic attempt at preventing any hurt feelings

Recent Examples on the Web

In just two weeks in office, his government has already chalked up a diplomatic incident with France over migration and raised eyebrows with the rejection of a European Union free-trade accord with Canada. Chiara Albanese, Bloomberg.com, "Conte Starts EU Roadshow in Test of Italy's Immigration Stance," 15 June 2018 Ethiopia and Eritrea have not had diplomatic ties since the war began in 1998, with Abiy himself fighting in a town that remains contested today, and the countries have skirmished since then. Elias Meseret, The Christian Science Monitor, "Ethiopia and Eritrea unite after ending 20-year border war," 9 July 2018 But the real diplomatic action, if there is any, is likely to take place between Kim and South Korea’s newish left-wing president who, unlike Trump, is actually conversant on the issues in play. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "4 stories that you shouldn’t miss this week, explained," 18 May 2018 Slovakia would join the Czech Republic and Bulgaria as the other European Union member states to expand their diplomatic presence in the city since U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital. Ariel Kahana, Jewish Journal, "Slovakia declares it will move its embassy to Jerusalem," 5 July 2018 The diplomatic breakthrough represented by Holt’s release comes as the U.S. re-evaluates Trump’s canceled nuclear summit with North Korea, the Times reports. Jeff Truesdell, PEOPLE.com, "American Returns Home After 2 'Very Difficult' Years in Venezuelan Prison: 'I'm Just So Grateful'," 27 May 2018 Everyone in the Washington and media elite knew this but set aside all the evidence to believe that Trump is someone else and might actually take negotiations seriously and usher in a major diplomatic breakthrough with North Korea. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Why did anyone ever take Trump’s North Korea diplomacy seriously?," 24 May 2018 Officials have not identified any other similar cases among the diplomatic community in the country. Michael Nedelman, CNN, "What we know about the possible 'sonic attacks' in Cuba and now China," 23 May 2018 The switch deepens Taiwan’s diplomatic isolation: only 19 countries now recognise it. The Economist, "Politics this week," 3 May 2018

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

1711, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for diplomatic

in sense 1, from New Latin diplomaticus, from Latin diplomat-, diploma; in other senses, from French diplomatique connected with documents regulating international relations, from New Latin diplomaticus

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Phrases Related to diplomatic

diplomatic corps

diplomatic cover

diplomatic immunity

Statistics for diplomatic

Last Updated

4 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for diplomatic

The first known use of diplomatic was in 1711

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English Language Learners Definition of diplomatic

: involving the work of maintaining good relations between the governments of different countries : of or relating to diplomats or their work

: not causing bad feelings : having or showing an ability to deal with people politely


dip·lo·mat·ic | \ˌdi-plə-ˈma-tik \

Kids Definition of diplomatic

1 : of or relating to keeping good relations between the governments of different countries

2 : not causing bad feelings a diplomatic answer a diplomatic manager

Other Words from diplomatic

diplomatically \-ti-kə-lē \ adverb He resolved the situation diplomatically.

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Comments on diplomatic

What made you want to look up diplomatic? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


evasion of direct action or statement

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