silence

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English[edit]

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Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French silence.

Noun[edit]

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silence (usually uncountable, plural silences)

  1. The lack of any sound.
    When the motor stopped, the silence was almost deafening.
  2. The act of refraining from speaking.
    "You have the right to silence," said the police officer.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 5, The Celebrity:
      Then we relapsed into a discomfited silence, and wished we were anywhere else. But Miss Thorn relieved the situation by laughing aloud, and with such a hearty enjoyment that instead of getting angry and more mortified we began to laugh ourselves, and instantly felt better.
    • D. Webster
      The administration itself keeps a profound silence.
  3. Form of meditative worship practiced by the Society of Friends (Quakers); meeting for worship.
    During silence a message came to me that there was that of God in every person.

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Verb[edit]

silence (third-person singular simple present silences, present participle silencing, simple past and past participle silenced)

  1. (transitive) To make (someone or something) silent.
    Can you silence the crowd, so we can start the show?
  2. (transitive) To suppress criticism, etc.
    Silence the critics.
    Silence the doubters.
    • 2011 December 19, Kerry Brown, “Kim Jong-il obituary”, The Guardian:
      A state ideology, mixing nationalism, and basic Marxist economics, going under the name "Juche", was constructed, and Kim Il-sung effectively silenced, disposed of and cleared away any opposition, isolating the country and exercising an iron grip on the military, the state media and the government and party organs.
  3. (Molecular biology) To block gene expression.

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Interjection[edit]

silence

  1. A common imperative instructing the addressed to remain silent.
    • Silence! Enough of your insolence!

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French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Latin silentium (silence)

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

silence m (plural silences)

  1. silence

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Ido[edit]

Etymology[edit]

silenco (silence) +‎ -e (indicates an adverb).

Adverb[edit]

silence

  1. noiselessly, silently, quietly

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Middle French[edit]

Noun[edit]

silence f (plural silences)

  1. silence (absence of noise)