Definition of urbane
: notably polite or polished in manner
urbane was our Word of the Day on 05/10/2016. Hear the podcast!
Examples of urbane in a Sentence
The dialogue is witty and urbane.
a gentlemanly and urbane host of elegant dinner parties
Recent Examples of urbane from the Web
Boulton was Watt's polar opposite, an urbane CEO who inherited a buckle business from his father and transformed it by designing and building a centralized, vertically integrated factory.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'urbane'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
City slickers and country folk have long debated whether life is better in town or in the wide open spaces, and urbane is a term that springs from the throes of that debate. The word traces back to Latin urbs, meaning "city," and in its earliest English uses urbane was synonymous with its close relative urban ("of, relating to, characteristic of, or constituting a city"). Urbane developed its modern sense of savoir faire from the belief (no doubt fostered by city dwellers) that living in the city made one more suave and polished than did leading a rural life.
Origin and Etymology of urbane
Latin urbanus urban, urbane
First Known Use: circa 1623See Words from the same year
Synonym Discussion of urbane
URBANE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of urbane for English Language Learners
: polite and confident
: fashionable and somewhat formal
Seen and Heard
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