\ ˈtrīt How to pronounce trite (audio) \
triter; tritest

Definition of trite

: hackneyed or boring from much use : not fresh or original

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Other Words from trite

tritely adverb
triteness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for trite

trite, hackneyed, stereotyped, threadbare mean lacking the freshness that evokes attention or interest. trite applies to a once effective phrase or idea spoiled from long familiarity. "you win some, you lose some" is a trite expression hackneyed stresses being worn out by overuse so as to become dull and meaningless. all of the metaphors and images in the poem are hackneyed stereotyped implies falling invariably into the same pattern or form. views of minorities that are stereotyped and out-of-date threadbare applies to what has been used until its possibilities of interest have been totally exhausted. a mystery novel with a threadbare plot

Examples of trite in a Sentence

The wrong sort of built environment, she argued, wrecked the social fabric of cities. This view seems almost trite today, but in the 1960's it was insurgent. — Robert Kuttner, New York Times Book Review, 12 Mar. 2000 Experts are always unique (their tritest pronouncements are packaged as news) … — Wendy Kaminer, New York Times Book Review, 11 Feb. 1990 Its wares are soiled with frequent handling; its styles are so hackneyed, trite, and homogeneous, they constitute a single style … — Joyce Carol Oates, The Profane Art, 1983 That argument has become trite. by the time the receiving line had ended, the bride and groom's thanks sounded trite and tired
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Recent Examples on the Web

What could’ve been a trite story line became an endearingly relatable narrative, thanks to the pen in Waithe’s hand. Tre’vell Anderson, Essence, "'Out' Magazine Director Tre’vell Anderson Says Black LGBTQ+ Diversity In Hollywood Has 'A Long Way To Go'," 6 June 2019 Both morals are too trite to qualify as revelations. Shunji Iwai, New York Times, "Review: In ‘Fireworks,’ Second Chances, but No Magic," 3 July 2018 The book is messy as hell: full of insipid platitudes, trite homilies, and self-regarding detours delivered with the assurance of a man who fully expects to see his childhood finger paintings in a museum someday. Laurie Penny, Longreads, "Peterson’s Complaint," 12 July 2018 Conflating macro and micro is an age-old theme easy to make into a trite hash, but Weingrod pulls it off thanks to his inventive, intensive process. Cate Mcquaid,, "Seeing the heavens in a cut of wood," 11 July 2018 And while trite may be preferable to embarrassing anecdotes from the bride and groom’s childhood, that’s an awfully low bar. Karen Stabiner, New York Times, "A Wedding Day Saga Ends With Words From the Heart," 27 June 2018 Perry quickly midwifed—as creator, writer, and director—the soapy The Haves and Have Nots and trite platitudinal working-class comedies like Love Thy Neighbor. Jason Parham, WIRED, "How Oprah’s Network Finally Found Its Voice," 19 June 2018 Straightforward bleakness in television is increasingly trite, which makes Reverie’s apparent optimism fresh and timely. Adi Robertson, The Verge, "NBC’s new VR thriller Reverie is a schmaltzy take on techno-dystopia," 30 May 2018 Her latest post finds the artist taking on what should, by now, be a trite format: the selfie. Rachel Hahn, Vogue, "Solange Reinvents the Selfie From Sunny Lake Como," 15 May 2018

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

1548, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for trite

Latin tritus, from past participle of terere to rub, wear away — more at throw entry 1

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Statistics for trite

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trite

The first known use of trite was in 1548

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More Definitions for trite



English Language Learners Definition of trite

: not interesting or effective because of being used too often : not fresh or original


\ ˈtrīt How to pronounce trite (audio) \
triter; tritest

Kids Definition of trite

: so common that the newness and cleverness have worn off : stale trite remarks

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More from Merriam-Webster on trite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trite

Spanish Central: Translation of trite

Nglish: Translation of trite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of trite for Arabic Speakers

Comments on trite

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showing courage and determination

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