From Middle French décent, or its source, Latin decēns, present participle of decet (“it is fitting or suitable”), from Proto-Indo-European *deke-, from base *dek- (“to take, accept, to receive, greet, be suitable”) (compare Ancient Greek δοκεῖν (dokein, “to appear, seem, think”), δέχεσθαι (dekhesthai, “to accept”); Sanskrit dacasyati (“shows honor, is gracious”), dacati (“makes offerings, bestows”)). Meaning kind, pleasant is from 1902.
- (obsolete) Appropriate; suitable for the circumstances.
- (of a person) Having a suitable conformity to basic moral standards; showing integrity, fairness, or other characteristics associated with moral uprightness.
- Sufficiently clothed or dressed to be seen.
- Are you decent? May I come in?
- Fair; good enough; okay.
- He's a decent saxophonist, but probably not good enough to make a career of it.
- Significant; substantial.
- There are a decent number of references out there, if you can find them.
- (obsolete) Comely; shapely; well-formed.
- A sable stole of cyprus lawn / Over thy decent shoulders drawn — Milton.