mute

adjective
\ ˈmyüt How to pronounce mute (audio) \
muter; mutest

Definition of mute

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : unable to speak : lacking the power of speech
2 : characterized by absence of speech: such as
a : felt or experienced but not expressed touched her hand in mute sympathy her mute hostility
b : refusing to plead directly or stand trial the prisoner stands mute
3 : remaining silent, undiscovered, or unrecognized The hounds generally hunt mute, so they can get close to the game.
4a : contributing nothing to the pronunciation of a word the b in plumb is mute
b : contributing to the pronunciation of a word but not representing the nucleus of a syllable the e in mate is mute

mute

noun
plural mutes

Definition of mute (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : a device attached to or inserted into a musical instrument to soften or alter its tone
3 dated, offensive : a person who lacks the ability to speak

mute

verb (1)
muted; muting

Definition of mute (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to muffle, reduce, or eliminate the sound of
2 : to tone down : soften, subdue mute a color

mute

verb (2)
muted; muting

Definition of mute (Entry 4 of 4)

intransitive verb

of a bird
: to evacuate the cloaca

Other Words from mute

Adjective

mutely adverb
muteness noun

Synonyms for mute

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of mute in a Sentence

Adjective They hugged each other in mute sympathy. I could see a mute plea for help in his eyes. Noun I was practicing my trumpet at three in the morning when the mute fell out, and I managed to wake everyone up.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Over the past decade, however, the U.S., Russia and China have developed sophisticated anti-satellite arsenals designed to render satellites deaf, mute and blind in space. W.j. Hennigan, Time, 19 Apr. 2022 Once on the road, the EQB is mainly analog and mute. Jonathon Ramsey, Car and Driver, 15 Apr. 2022 The Oscars telecast then went mute for a spell as Smith walked to the stage and hit Rock. Andrew R. Chow, Time, 28 Mar. 2022 The menu brings a mute function to the new Mojo, four crossfeed settings, a button-lock feature for traveling, plus those fully lossless tone controls. Mark Sparrow, Forbes, 31 Jan. 2022 Rhodes also taught coding, including holding special classes for the deaf, mute, and blind. Chandra Steele, PCMAG, 24 Mar. 2022 The mix was just right in letting Misty’s band sound like a rock band; the fleeting electric guitar breaks have certainly been louder before, but there was no mute button put on a drum kit that put some real kick in all the proceedings. Chris Willman, Variety, 27 Feb. 2022 Readers hear frequently from Homer, but other short chapters focus on timid Billy; Nora, the plantation owner’s mute, lonely daughter; and fearless Sanzi, whose risk-taking often leads to trouble. Washington Post, 2 Feb. 2022 What remains is not just mute but suffocated, along with the promise of endless possibility. Vince Aletti, The New Yorker, 18 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In fact, the survey says that 92% of U.S. executives report employees who are less engaged, either frequently on mute or don’t turn on their camera during virtual meetings, probably don’t have a long-term future at their company. Jasmine Browley, Essence, 25 Apr. 2022 The first trick to nailing a historical figure’s voice is an unlikely one: watching YouTube clips on mute. Sarah Ball, WSJ, 27 Mar. 2022 There a large landscape print on one wall and a couple TVs on mute. Matt Wake | Mwake@al.com, al, 15 Feb. 2022 Then one day, while posting up in his apartment with a cousin, staring at a television on mute, Williams watched a slightly younger version of himself walk across the screen. Jamie Lauren Keiles Ismail Muhammad Kim Tingley Benoit Denizet-lewis Sam Anderson Jazmine Hughes Irina Aleksander Sasha Weiss Rowan Ricardo Phillips Stella Bugbee Michael Paterniti Maggie Jones Robert Draper Rob Hoerburger Jason Zengerle Reginald Dwayne Betts Jane Hu David Marchese Hanif Abdurraqib Jenna Wortham Anthony Giardina Niela Orr Amy X. Wang, New York Times, 25 Dec. 2021 There's a physical mute switch to turn off the microphone for extra peace of mind. Julian Chokkattu, Wired, 28 Nov. 2021 Insiders beta release to test out the mute switch now. Chris Smith, BGR, 4 Nov. 2021 Then one day, while posting up in his apartment with a cousin, staring at a television on mute, Williams watched a slightly younger version of himself walk across the screen. Jamie Lauren Keiles Ismail Muhammad Kim Tingley Benoit Denizet-lewis Sam Anderson Jazmine Hughes Irina Aleksander Sasha Weiss Rowan Ricardo Phillips Stella Bugbee Michael Paterniti Maggie Jones Robert Draper Rob Hoerburger Jason Zengerle Reginald Dwayne Betts Jane Hu David Marchese Hanif Abdurraqib Jenna Wortham Anthony Giardina Niela Orr Amy X. Wang, New York Times, 25 Dec. 2021 Then one day, while posting up in his apartment with a cousin, staring at a television on mute, Williams watched a slightly younger version of himself walk across the screen. Jamie Lauren Keiles Ismail Muhammad Kim Tingley Benoit Denizet-lewis Sam Anderson Jazmine Hughes Irina Aleksander Sasha Weiss Rowan Ricardo Phillips Stella Bugbee Michael Paterniti Maggie Jones Robert Draper Rob Hoerburger Jason Zengerle Reginald Dwayne Betts Jane Hu David Marchese Hanif Abdurraqib Jenna Wortham Anthony Giardina Niela Orr Amy X. Wang, New York Times, 25 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb One pro tip: be sure to let the chill come off the bottle a bit before sipping—really cold temperatures tend to mute a wine’s flavors and aromas. Katie Kelly Bell, Forbes, 30 Apr. 2022 Union supporters accused Amazon of excluding them from meetings to mute criticism and pushback, but Amazon denied the accusation. Noam Scheiber, BostonGlobe.com, 31 Mar. 2022 Auto loans may also rise, although these can be more sensitive to competition for buyers, which could mute the Fed hike's impact. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, 16 Mar. 2022 One of my writing techniques is actually to put on some of my favorite film clips, mute them and write to them. Spin Staff, SPIN, 12 Apr. 2022 In turn, this will mute competition from Xi’s opposition within the Chinese Communist Party. David Bachman, Quartz, 8 Feb. 2022 To mute someone on Twitter, go to their profile page, click the three dots at the top of the timeline, then choose Mute. David Nield, Wired, 20 Mar. 2022 Rather, the rules of our politics mute the power of the majority for the will of the minority. Abdul El-sayed, The New Republic, 10 Mar. 2022 In turn, this will mute competition from Xi’s opposition within the Chinese Communist Party. David Bachman, Quartz, 8 Feb. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With Russia’s economy facing a steep economic downturn as international sanctions bite, Moscow appears eager to mute the pain. New York Times, 16 May 2022 Marsh, appearing virtually Wednesday from the Ocean County Jail, yelled and used obscenities repeatedly throughout the proceeding, prompting the Superior Court Judge Guy P. Ryan to order the hearing’s moderator to mute the defendant. Kathleen Hopkins, USA TODAY, 21 Apr. 2022 Others may want to hide a messy bedroom or mute the sound of their children arguing with one another in the next room. Sarah Todd, Quartz, 19 Apr. 2022 One of my writing techniques is actually to put on some of my favorite film clips, mute them and write to them. Spin Staff, SPIN, 12 Apr. 2022 To mute someone on Twitter, go to their profile page, click the three dots at the top of the timeline, then choose Mute. David Nield, Wired, 20 Mar. 2022 Alexis Harrison, a Fairfield zoning commissioner, said the bill would mute local control. Ginny Monk, Hartford Courant, 9 Apr. 2022 Rather, the rules of our politics mute the power of the majority for the will of the minority. Abdul El-sayed, The New Republic, 10 Mar. 2022 In turn, this will mute competition from Xi’s opposition within the Chinese Communist Party. David Bachman, Quartz, 8 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of mute

Adjective

1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1530, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Verb (1)

1883, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for mute

Adjective, Noun, and Verb (1)

Middle English muet, mut, from Anglo-French, from mu, mute, from Latin mutus, probably from mu, representation of a muttered sound

Verb (2)

Middle English, from Anglo-French *meutir, short for ameutir, alteration of Old French esmeltir, of Germanic origin; akin to Middle Dutch smelten to melt, make fluid, defecate (of birds)

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Time Traveler for mute

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The first known use of mute was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near mute

mutchkin

mute

muted

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Statistics for mute

Last Updated

23 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Mute.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/mute. Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for mute

mute

adjective
\ ˈmyüt How to pronounce mute (audio) \
muter; mutest

Kids Definition of mute

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : unable or unwilling to speak The shy boy sat mute through class.
2 : felt or expressed without the use of words He touched her hand in mute sympathy.

mute

noun

Kids Definition of mute (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a person who cannot or does not speak
2 : a device on a musical instrument that deadens, softens, or muffles its tone

mute

verb
muted; muting

Kids Definition of mute (Entry 3 of 3)

: to soften or reduce the sound of We muted our voices.

mute

adjective
\ ˈmyüt How to pronounce mute (audio) \
muter; mutest

Medical Definition of mute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: unable to speak : lacking the power of speech

Other Words from mute

muteness noun

mute

noun

Medical Definition of mute (Entry 2 of 2)

dated, offensive : a person who lacks the ability to speak

More from Merriam-Webster on mute

Nglish: Translation of mute for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of mute for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about mute

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