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[trahyt] /traɪt/
adjective, triter, tritest.
lacking in freshness or effectiveness because of constant use or excessive repetition; hackneyed; stale:
the trite phrases in his letter.
characterized by hackneyed expressions, ideas, etc.:
The commencement address was trite and endlessly long.
Archaic. rubbed or worn by use.
Origin of trite
1540-50; < Latin trītus worn, common, equivalent to trī- (variant stem of terere to rub, wear down) + -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
tritely, adverb
triteness, noun
untrite, adjective
untritely, adverb
untriteness, noun
1. ordinary. See commonplace.
1. original. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for triteness
Historical Examples
  • The triteness of his moral climax is occasionally startling.

  • triteness is present, but that is to be expected in all amateur fiction.

    Writings in the United Amateur, 1915-1922 Howard Phillips Lovecraft
  • The older man repressed a smile at the triteness of the speech, which is that usually educed from every new beholder of the scene.

    The Boy With the U. S. Survey Francis Rolt-Wheeler
  • The triteness of words 'plus sonores que solides' is the second.

    mile Verhaeren Stefan Zweig
  • He was disgusted with the triteness of this remark, but he could think of nothing else.

    Birthright T.S. Stribling
  • And somehow the triteness of the phrase from mother is ridiculously pleasing to me.

    The Fifth Wheel Olive Higgins Prouty
  • Brouillard laughed and fell headlong into the pit of triteness.

  • The meagerness and triteness of the music and piece astonished me.

    Records of a Girlhood Frances Ann Kemble
  • You don't come it over me with the triteness of these round numbers.

  • Obscurity of expression is merely the cloak in which men seek to hide their poverty of thought and triteness of mind.

    Schopenhauer Margrieta Beer
British Dictionary definitions for triteness


hackneyed; dull: a trite comment
(archaic) frayed or worn out
Derived Forms
tritely, adverb
triteness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin trītus worn down, from terere to rub
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for triteness



1540s, from Latin tritus "worn, familiar," from past participle of terere "to rub, wear down" (see throw (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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