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 Like its predecessor, the documentary is a piece of workmanlike TV that relies on restless editing, conspicuous background music, and repetition, with talking heads providing both sharp insight and familiar platitudes. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "The R. Kelly Story Is Bigger Than Most People Know," 2 Jan. 2020 Confronting skepticism The trick is to execute these kinds of transformations in ways that go beyond platitudes and window-dressing. John Engen, Quartz at Work, "How a global chemical company gave itself a corporate purpose makeover," 16 Dec. 2019 The script oscillates between the profound and tiresome, shoehorning in sweeping pronouncements, naked social commentary and tired platitudes. Barbara Vandenburgh, azcentral, "‘Queen & Slim’ is swaggering and devastating," 26 Nov. 2019 Those are nice words and platitudes are important in moments like Saturday night. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "The Michigan football team we waited for finally showed up ... too late," 20 Oct. 2019 This country loves to see itself through the blinders of platitudes like those espoused by DeGeneres this week. Michael Arceneaux, Essence, "Stop Trying To Sanitize The Image Of A War Criminal," 10 Oct. 2019 During coffee in West Hollywood, Amoruso casually spouted quotes and platitudes. Lindzi Scharf,, "Sophia Amoruso, L.A.’s millennial ‘Girlboss,’ is busy with her second act," 3 July 2019 But when answers weren’t close at hand, O’Rourke veered off into platitudes and campaign trail themes. Katie Palmer, Quartz, "The most important takeaways from the Democrats’ climate town hall," 5 Sep. 2019 Waller dispensed with the usual platitudes and pleasantries, hammering home his ideas for solving Mississippi’s most glaring problems and sounding almost liberal at times. Bob Moser, The New Yorker, "Mississippi’s Race for Governor Tests the Limits of Conservatism," 2 Aug. 2019

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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Time Traveler for platitude

Time Traveler

The first known use of platitude was in 1762

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Statistics for platitude

Last Updated

14 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Platitude.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 22 January 2020.

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More Definitions for platitude


How to pronounce platitude (audio)

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

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