plat·​i·​tude | \ ˈpla-tə-ˌtüd How to pronounce platitude (audio) , -ˌtyüd\

Definition of platitude

1 : the quality or state of being dull or insipid
2 : a banal, trite, or stale remark

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Examples of platitude in a Sentence

His speech was filled with familiar platitudes about the value of hard work and dedication. “blondes have more fun” is a silly platitude

Recent Examples on the Web

Ban Mound Visits The image of an out-of-shape manager plodding onto the field to offer platitudes to his pitcher is ingrained in baseball’s fabric. WSJ, "Our Insane Ideas to Save Baseball," 25 Oct. 2018 This sounds like a cliché, but much of the truth about what’s happening in Wind Gap is masquerading behind platitudes — like the idea that the women are all talk, too gentle and passive for murder. Aja Romano, Vox, "In Sharp Objects, secrets are the sharpest weapons of all," 30 July 2018 But so far, the USOC's account of itself has been bracingly free of information and long on platitude and propaganda. Sally Jenkins,, "The USOC needs a leader who cares about athletes more than expense accounts," 5 July 2018 On the issue of violence, Mr. López Obrador has largely failed to articulate a policy that goes much beyond platitudes. New York Times, "López Obrador, an Atypical Leftist, Wins Mexico Presidency in Landslide," 2 July 2018 The large number of dead and wounded attracts headlines and the usual prayers, platitudes and condolences from politicians. Alan M. Delamater, Ph.d., miamiherald, "Children and gun violence: Solutions to reducing the epidemic | Miami Herald," 20 Feb. 2018 Lamm endears, despite Osborn’s lines that require her to burst with trite generalities and platitudes. Jim Rutter,, "People's Light's 'Morning's at Seven' delivers charm and laughs despite much family angst," 14 Jan. 2018 But the show’s appealing performers and catchy look don’t yet outweigh its lack of cohesion and its readiness to fall back on platitudes about the corrosive effects of wealth. Mike Hale, New York Times, "Review: ‘Trust’ Is Flashy but Ephemeral," 22 Mar. 2018 Unfortunately, the movie is weighed down by stock characters, dialogue riddled with banal platitudes, poor storytelling, and an over-reliance on genre conventions., "Before 'Geostorm': 11 of the best and 11 of the worst disaster movies," 20 Oct. 2017

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

1762, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for platitude

French, from plat flat, dull

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Statistics for platitude

Last Updated

20 May 2019

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Time Traveler for platitude

The first known use of platitude was in 1762

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More Definitions for platitude



English Language Learners Definition of platitude

disapproving : a statement that expresses an idea that is not new

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More from Merriam-Webster on platitude

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for platitude

Spanish Central: Translation of platitude

Nglish: Translation of platitude for Spanish Speakers

Comments on platitude

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


highly pertinent or appropriate

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