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Definition of "diffident" [dif•fi•dent]

  • Lacking or marked by a lack of self-confidence; shy and timid. See Synonyms at shy1. (adjective)
  • Reserved in manner. (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "diffident" in a sentence
  • "The old, merry Whiting looked sideways at Richard, then the round face assumed an expression of diffident humility for Mr. Hanks."
  • "But, although Mary was a blushing and sensitive person, she was not what is commonly called a diffident girl; -- her nerves had that healthy, steady poise which gave her presence of mind in the most unwonted circumstances."
  • "The word diffident has appeared in 72 New York Times articles in the past year, including on Sept. 2 in How to Choose and"