di·​rect·​ness | \ də-ˈrek(t)-nəs How to pronounce directness (audio) , dī- \

Definition of directness

1 : the character of being accurate in course or aim
2 : strict pertinence : straightforwardness her directness was disarming— Robin Cook

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of directness in a Sentence

his directness is much appreciated by his patients
Recent Examples on the Web But what attracts me to the poem is its simple and powerful directness. April Austin, The Christian Science Monitor, "Readers share their favorite poems of comfort," 5 June 2020 So Warhol took photography’s directness and turned it into fine art. Blake Gopnik, Smithsonian Magazine, "How Andy Warhol Came to Paint Campbell’s Soup Cans," 16 Apr. 2020 Scott is an advocate for honesty and directness even in the best of circumstances. Sarah Todd, Quartz at Work, "The most ethical way for leaders to communicate about the prospect of layoffs," 9 Apr. 2020 But others would find such directness startling, cold, or abrupt. Erika W. Smith,, "Exactly How To Initiate Sex Without Feeling Awkward," 30 Jan. 2020 Two interwoven narratives dominate this film — Lil Peep’s inexorable rise, owing to the emotional directness and melodic accessibility of his music; and his thin defenses against the demands and consequences of fame. Jon Caramanica, New York Times, "Juice WRLD and the Tragic End of the SoundCloud Rap Era," 9 Dec. 2019 Gottlieb is a fast talker who speaks in sound bites, and is drawn to the immediacy and directness of Twitter–another asset during a fast-evolving pandemic. Jamie Ducharme, Time, "'It Tortures Me That I'm Not There Helping.' Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb on the Fight Against COVID-19," 9 Apr. 2020 He is beautifully matched by Oh (Payne’s wife), who brings a captivating mixture of sensuality and directness to the woman who’s the focus of Jack’s attention. Los Angeles Times, "Review: Aged to perfection, Alexander Payne’s ‘Sideways’ is worth more than a glance," 1 Apr. 2020 Yet no Romantic excess or affect intruded upon the integrity and directness of his music-making. New York Times, "Two Pianists Test the Meaning of Virtuosity," 4 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'directness.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of directness

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about directness

Time Traveler for directness

Time Traveler

The first known use of directness was in 1598

See more words from the same year

Statistics for directness

Last Updated

25 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Directness.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on directness

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for directness

Spanish Central: Translation of directness

Nglish: Translation of directness for Spanish Speakers

Comments on directness

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!