Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Habitually untalkative. See Synonyms at silent.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Silent; temperamentally untalkative; disinclined to speak.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Habitually silent; not given to converse; not apt to talk or speak.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Silent or reserved in speech; saying little; not inclined to speak or converse.
  • Synonyms Mute, Dumb (see silent), reserved, uncommunicative, reticent.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. habitually reserved and uncommunicative

Etymologies

French taciturne, from Old French, from Latin taciturnus, from tacitus, silent; see tacit.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French taciturne or Latin taciturnus, from tacitus ("secret, tacit"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

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  • "We go out in stormy weather
    We rarely practice discern
    We make love to some with sin
    We seek out the taciturn"

    -Spoon, "That's the Way We Get By"

    April 29, 2009

  • Elizabeth Bennet: "No... No, I prefer to be unsociable and taciturn... Makes it all so much more enjoyable, don't you think?"

    August 5, 2008

  • John, I actually learned the word from watching Angel. Who says TV isn't educational? :)

    The word itself comes from latin..."Tacite" if I am remembering correctly. It means "silent" in that form. (Just so ya know.)

    February 20, 2008

  • I always thought both words have a negative and positive connotation, depending on how you use them. :-)

    August 30, 2007

  • Really? I always thought taciturn was a noble trait and reticent was refusing to reveal import information.

    August 30, 2007

  • Like reticent, but in a bad way. :-P

    August 30, 2007

  • habitually silent; not inclined to talk

    March 23, 2007

  • "Buffy, I too know the love of a taciturn man" - Willow Rosenberg, BTVS, "Enemies"

    December 10, 2006