succinct

adjective
suc·​cinct | \ (ˌ)sək-ˈsiŋ(k)t How to pronounce succinct (audio) , sə-ˈsiŋ(k)t How to pronounce succinct (audio) \

Definition of succinct

1 : marked by compact precise expression without wasted words a succinct description
2 archaic
a : being girded
b : close-fitting

Other Words from succinct

succinctly \ (ˌ)sək-​ˈsiŋ(k)t-​lē How to pronounce succinct (audio) , -​ˈsiŋ-​klē , sə-​ \ adverb
succinctness \ (ˌ)sək-​ˈsiŋt-​nəs How to pronounce succinct (audio) , -​ˈsiŋk-​nəs , sə-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for succinct

concise, terse, succinct, laconic, summary, pithy, compendious mean very brief in statement or expression. concise suggests the removal of all that is superfluous or elaborative. a concise description terse implies pointed conciseness. a terse reply succinct implies the greatest possible compression. a succinct letter of resignation laconic implies brevity to the point of seeming rude, indifferent, or mysterious. an aloof and laconic stranger summary suggests the statement of main points with no elaboration or explanation. a summary listing of the year's main events pithy adds to succinct or terse the implication of richness of meaning or substance. a comedy sharpened by pithy one-liners compendious applies to what is at once full in scope and brief and concise in treatment. a compendious dictionary

A Succinct History of Succinct

The history of succinct might not be short, but it's a cinch to remember. Succinct traces to Latin succinctus ("tightly wrapped, concise"), which comes from the verb cingere ("to gird"), the word that gave us cincture and cinch. In its earliest uses succinct meant "confined" or "girded up," and, as such, it was often used in reference to garments encircled by a band. Eventually, succinct was extended to the realm of insects, where it meant "supported by a band of silk around the middle" (as in "the succinct pupa of a butterfly"). Later, the word was applied to writings. A "succinct" piece of writing is "compressed" or "compact" and uses as few words as possible.

Examples of succinct in a Sentence

Other experts are in the business of selling their research. Alan Greenspan made his reputation and career as a partner of Townsend-Greenspan, whose clients were a who's who of old Wall Street. Successful research firms can command substantial fees, and buyers demand clear, succinct and unequivocal analysis and predictions. — Zachary Karabell, Newsweek, 9 Mar. 2009 As Esther Benbassa recounts in her dry but impressively succinct and informative history, they arrived in the Roman province of Gaul in the first centuries of the common era, and soon found themselves trod underfoot by the ascendant Christian church. — David A. Bell, New Republic, 28 Feb. 2000 In his first work of popular science, English theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking proves himself to be a master of vivid clarity. His title, " A Brief History of Time," is understated even by British standards; in 198 pages Hawking manages no less than a succinct history of cosmology, a concise explanation of general relativity and its intersection with quantum mechanics … — Richard Rhodes, Chicago Tribune, 27 Mar. 1988 He gave a succinct overview of the expansion project. a pocket guide that provides succinct explanations for rules of grammar and punctuation
Recent Examples on the Web Each test case should be broken down into a sequence of succinct steps. Margarita Simonova, Forbes, 7 July 2022 Capitol Letter is a daily briefing providing succinct, prompt information for those who care deeply about the decisions made by state government. cleveland, 6 July 2022 Yet the succinct language in Title IX, the landmark education law that was signed in 1972, has origins in even fewer characters. New York Times, 23 June 2022 And no one is asking them to be succinct, says Maltin. Marco Della Cava, USA TODAY, 22 July 2022 Those in the West are typically trained to be succinct, to focus on the core information, to get to the point. Greg Story, Forbes, 6 June 2022 In a succinct email, clearly articulate the reason for getting in contact with the potential partner, and end by asking for the best time to continue the conversation to discuss what was briefly presented at length. Pauleanna Reid, Forbes, 15 June 2022 Clocking in at 2½ hours, the Olivier Award-winning production is not a particularly succinct bit of storytelling. Celia Wren, Washington Post, 30 May 2022 Her zingers—succinct, often biting, always revealing—leapt out amid the show’s famously sparse dialogue. Elizabeth Holmes, Town & Country, 29 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of succinct

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for succinct

Middle English, from Latin succinctus having one's clothes gathered up by a belt, tightly wrapped, concise, from sub- + cinctus, past participle of cingere to gird — more at cincture

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

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Last Updated

7 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Succinct.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/succinct. Accessed 12 Aug. 2022.

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