taciturn was our Word of the Day on 12/14/2011. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of taciturn in a Sentence
- I went on speech strike … remaining defiantly taciturn through a procession of speech therapists and psychotherapists, verbalizing only to the gardener and swearing him to silence. —Simon Schama, New Republic, 22 July 2002
- The pipe-smoking Malcolm Cowley … though a faithful fellow-traveller, was too taciturn usually to show his hand. —Mary McCarthy, Granta 27, Summer 1989
- She was a small, taut, pale, wiry London girl, alarmingly taciturn, demon at basketball (at which she captained us) … —Elizabeth Bowen, The Mulberry Tree, 1986
- When he got to the substation that night, this private taciturn fellow had to spill his guts. If he didn't tell somebody, he might blow like a land mine. —Joseph Wambaugh, Lines and Shadows, 1984
a somewhat taciturn young man
a taciturn man, he almost never initiates a conversation
Recent Examples of taciturn from the Web
Indeed, McConnell gloated in a tweet that seems to show the usually taciturn majority leader smiling as a white substance drifts around him: Is that supposed to be cocaine?
Trump, who confidants say was expecting the moral finger-wagging but not the personal insults, was unusually taciturn about the interview on Monday.
Bjorn Borg, a taciturn Swede with a two-fisted backhand and steady baseline game, had won Wimbledon four times.
Hess’ singing voice wants more breath support, and Richardson doesn’t mine much range in Robert’s attempt to paint himself as a taciturn cowboy.
Professional golfers are a taciturn bunch on the course.
Amid this special-effects maelstrom, Wade Watts never emerges as a character, and the taciturn Sheridan is in constant danger of being out-acted by his own avatar.
In Lonergan’s third film, Manchester by the Sea, Casey Affleck plays Lee Chandler, a taciturn janitor who lives alone in a basement in Boston and spends his days scrubbing toilets, shoveling snow, doing odd handyman jobs.
The supporting cast is nothing short of dear — her awkward twin brother, taciturn physician father, elderly grandmother, devoted houseman and brave uncle.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'taciturn.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
How Should You Use taciturn?
We first find "taciturn" in a satiric drama written in 1734 by James Miller, a British clergyman educated at Oxford. A character describes a nephew thus: "When he was little, he never was what they call Roguish or Waggish, but was always close, quiet, and taciturn." It seems we waited unduly long to adopt this useful descendent of the verb tacēre, meaning "to be silent" - we were quicker to adopt other words from the "tacēre" family. We’ve been using "tacit," an adjective meaning "expressed without words" or "implied," since the mid-17th century. And we’ve had the noun taciturnity, meaning "habitual silence," since at least 1450.
Synonym Discussion of taciturn
- the strong, silent type
- taciturn villagers
- was reticent about his plans
- greetings were brief, formal, and reserved
- the secretive research and development division
TACITURN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of taciturn for English Language Learners
: tending to be quiet : not speaking frequently
Seen and Heard
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