woodenness

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

wooden +‎ -ness

Noun[edit]

woodenness (usually uncountable, plural woodennesses)

  1. The state of being wooden (often in a figurative sense).
    • 1859, Henry David Thoreau, A Plea for Captain John Brown,[1]
      There is hardly a house but is divided against itself, for our foe is the all but universal woodenness of both head and heart, the want of vitality in man, which is the effect of our vice; and hence are begotten fear, superstition, bigotry, persecution, and slavery of all kinds.
    • 1917, William John Locke, The Red Planet, Chapter 5,[2]
      [] Marigold’s smile faded into woodenness []
    • 2002, J. M. Coetzee, Youth: Scenes from Provincial Life II, London: Vintage, 2003, Chapter Eight, pp. 66-67,
      What of him then? If no woman has yet detected, behind his woodenness, his clenched grimness, any flicker of the sacred fire []