hon·​es·​ty | \ ˈä-nə-stē How to pronounce honesty (audio) \
plural honesties

Definition of honesty

1a : adherence to the facts : sincerity doubted the honesty of the witness
b : fairness and straightforwardness of conduct calling for honesty in politics
2 : any of a genus (Lunaria) of European herbs of the mustard family with toothed leaves and flat disk-shaped siliques
3 obsolete : chastity

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Choose the Right Synonym for honesty

honesty, honor, integrity, probity mean uprightness of character or action. honesty implies a refusal to lie, steal, or deceive in any way. honor suggests an active or anxious regard for the standards of one's profession, calling, or position. integrity implies trustworthiness and incorruptibility to a degree that one is incapable of being false to a trust, responsibility, or pledge. probity implies tried and proven honesty or integrity.

Examples of honesty in a Sentence

She is admired for her kindness and her honesty. He demands honesty from everyone who works for him. He didn't even have enough honesty to tell me he was leaving.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Sure, the role is one giant stereotype, but Mosley pulls it off with style, while also revealing layers of emotion that bring the character to life with honesty and conviction. nola.com, "‘Kinky Boots’ kicks up its musical heels at the Saenger," 15 June 2019 In all honesty, though, few of us will be able to attract a large enough swallow colony to our yards to eliminate the bug population. John Schandelmeier, Anchorage Daily News, "Instead of zapping Alaska’s mosquitoes, build a birdhouse," 6 June 2019 In all honesty, your sisters probably went from being your tormentors to your best friends. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "20 Things You'll Only Understand If You Have a Sister," 27 Mar. 2019 But in all honesty, plants can be kind of a hassle to hang up. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "This Simple Invention Will Transform Your Window Into Plant-Hanging Heaven," 19 Mar. 2019 But in all honesty there is nothing that can compete against Amazon. Sam Schechner And Valentina Pop, WSJ, "EU Starts Preliminary Probe into Amazon's Treatment of Merchants," 19 Sep. 2018 That 2012 novel was The Casual Vacancy, which is in all honesty not a very good book. Constance Grady, Vox, "J.K. Rowling’s Cormoran Strike books are the next best thing to a grown-up Harry Potter," 31 Aug. 2018 In all honesty, this looks like a real upgrade to the preschool community in this town, OK. Rick Kambic, chicagotribune.com, "Spa, day care and restaurant proposed for Vernon Hills AMC theater site," 18 June 2018 The raw honesty of Gragossian’s blog has resonated, drawing more than 1,200 readers per month. Aneri Pattani, https://www.inquirer.com, "Organ transplant recipients balance guilt and gratitude: 'These were supposed to be her breaths’," 5 June 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for honesty

see honest entry 1

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Statistics for honesty

Last Updated

22 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for honesty

The first known use of honesty was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for honesty



English Language Learners Definition of honesty

: the quality of being fair and truthful : the quality of being honest


hon·​es·​ty | \ ˈä-nə-stē How to pronounce honesty (audio) \

Kids Definition of honesty

: the quality or state of being truthful and fair

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Comments on honesty

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


showing courage and determination

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