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
Now this taciturn phase may be coming to an end, if a growing multidisciplinary group of scientists and amateur space enthusiasts have their way.
That’s partly because Maud’s insulated existence — spent mostly in a shed-sized cottage with her taciturn husband, Everett (a riveting Ethan Hawke) — hardly lends itself to your typical timeline-hopping Great Lady narrative.
Metcalf delivered it to the taciturn prostitute played by Headly.
The Associated Press reported Friday that the former FBI director’s inquiry will absorb a federal criminal investigation into Paul Manafort, the taciturn political operative who led Trump’s campaign last summer.
As the protagonist Betty (Naomi Watts) tried to make her entry to Hollywood, Mulholland Dr. delved into meetings between various unknown players, be they cowboys or taciturn studio executives.
Each marvelously introspective piece is populated by taciturn characters with profound emotional lives.
The selection of Mueller, a taciturn former federal prosecutor who led the FBI through the Sept. 11 attacks, received bipartisan embrace.
Bledel’s absence from the show’s flashback sequences (which are all told from Offred’s perspective) almost allows audiences to think of Ofglen as a dark, taciturn future version of the bright and loquacious Rory.
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
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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