: timorous uncertain agitation : apprehension
Did You Know?
If you've ever trembled with fright, you know something of both the sensation and etymology of trepidation. The word comes from the Latin verb trepidare, which means "to tremble." When it first appeared in English in the early 1600s, it meant "tremulous motion" or "tremor." Around the same time, English speakers also started using the "nervous agitation" sense of trepidation that we use today.
Fran's trepidation going into the interview dissipated quickly, and her confidence and poise led her to getting offered the job a week later.
"The couple's trepidation isn't about how the state would handle the rare orchids.… They simply are worried that the state would not pay them what their land is worth, if … officials … decide to try and purchase a portion of their land to widen Route 22." — Ronnie Wachter, The Chicago Tribune, 1 Aug. 2016
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