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Webster 1913 Edition


decent

de′cent

(dē′sent)
,
Adj.
[L.
decens
,
decentis
, p. pr. of
decere
to be fitting or becoming; akin to
decus
glory, honor, ornament, Gr.
δοκεῖν
to seem good, to seem, think; cf. Skr.
dāç
to grant, to give; and perh. akin to E.
attire
,
tire
: cf. F.
décent
. Cf.
Decorate
,
Decorum
,
Deign
.]
1.
Suitable in words, behavior, dress, or ceremony; becoming; fit; decorous; proper; seemly;
as,
decent
conduct;
decent
language
.
Shak.
Before his
decent
steps.
Milton.
2.
Free from immodesty or obscenity; modest.
3.
Comely; shapely; well-formed.
[Archaic]
A sable stole of cyprus lawn
Over thy
decent
shoulders drawn.
Milton.
By foreign hands thy
decent
limbs composed.
Pope.
4.
Moderate, but competent; sufficient; hence, respectable; fairly good; reasonably comfortable or satisfying;
as, a
decent
fortune; a
decent
person.
De′cent-ly
,
adv.
De′cent-ness
,
Noun.

Webster 1828 Edition


Decent

DE'CENT

,
Adj.
[L. decens; Fr. decent.]

Definition 2022


decent

decent

See also: décent

English

Adjective

decent (comparative more decent, superlative most decent)

  1. (obsolete) Appropriate; suitable for the circumstances.
  2. (of a person) Having a suitable conformity to basic moral standards; showing integrity, fairness, or other characteristics associated with moral uprightness.
  3. (informal) Sufficiently clothed or dressed to be seen.
    Are you decent? May I come in?
  4. Fair; good enough; okay.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, “Foreword”, in The China Governess:
      A canister of flour from the kitchen had been thrown at the looking-glass and lay like trampled snow over the remains of a decent blue suit with the lining ripped out which lay on top of the ruin of a plastic wardrobe.
    He's a decent saxophonist, but probably not good enough to make a career of it.
  5. Significant; substantial.
    There are a decent number of references out there, if you can find them.
  6. (obsolete) Comely; shapely; well-formed.
    • A sable stole of cyprus lawn / Over thy decent shoulders drawn Milton.

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