un·​der·​stat·​ed | \ˌən-dər-ˈstā-təd \

Definition of understated 

: avoiding obvious emphasis or embellishment understated elegance

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Other Words from understated

understatedly adverb

Examples of understated in a Sentence

the actor's understated interpretation of the lead role is surprisingly compelling

Recent Examples on the Web

His understated performance on Saturday won’t be the last time the rookie struggles on the court this summer or this coming season. Atreya Verma, azcentral, "How Suns' Elie Okobo went from shooting guard to point guard," 7 July 2018 Pousadas, or inns, are usually found in smaller towns, but Pousada Ziláh has six rooms in a 1932 house that aches with understated charm, a mere 10-minute walk from the bustle (and subway) of Paulista Avenue. Seth Kugel, New York Times, "36 Hours in São Paulo," 1 Mar. 2018 The mother of two has opted for more understated jewelry pieces recently. Maria Pasquini, PEOPLE.com, "Kim Kardashian West Shows Off Grill and ‘Pablo’ Necklace Days After Breaking No Jewelry Rule," 14 Jan. 2018 That understated poise, coupled with our odd cultural tic of equating everything Hawaiian with easygoing chillness, clouds our appreciation of the meticulous labor and thoughtful innovation behind every dish on the Liholiho menu. Ali Bouzari, SFChronicle.com, "Housemade: The magic of Liholiho Yacht Club," 22 June 2018 Electro-pop duo Phantogram were one of many 88.9-approved artists to headline the festival this year, and their performance at the Miller Lite Oasis stage was one of the festival’s most understated and underrated sets. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Best and worst of Summerfest Day 10: Kip Moore, Jonathan Davis of Korn, Phantogram & more," 7 July 2018 Even parked by a wall of blazing bougainvillea, the car looks understated. Hannah Elliott, latimes.com, "In car-obsessed L.A. area, David Lee spent $1 million to update an infamous Ferrari," 4 May 2018 Stearns, who lives in south Natick and is writer-in-residence at Roxbury Latin School in Boston, writes with an understated elegance. Nina Maclaughlin, BostonGlobe.com, "Bookstore writers in residence, winner of poetry chapbook contest," 12 July 2018 This movie is one of the most sincere, beautiful, understated pieces of art from last year. Tom Philip, GQ, "The Best Movies/TV to Stream on Amazon Prime This July 4," 3 July 2018

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

circa 1909, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for understated

Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for understated

The first known use of understated was circa 1909

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English Language Learners Definition of understated

: expressed or done in a quiet or simple way

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by force of circumstances

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