"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[ded-pan] /ˈdɛdˌpæn/
marked by or accomplished with a careful pretense of seriousness or calm detachment; impassive or expressionless:
deadpan humor.
displaying no emotional or personal involvement:
a deadpan style.
in a deadpan manner:
He spoke his lines utterly deadpan.
verb (used without object), verb (used with object), deadpanned, deadpanning.
to behave or perform in a deadpan manner.
noun, Also, dead pan
a face showing no expression.
a style of comedy that relies on the comedian's maintaining such a face.
Origin of deadpan
1925-30, Americanism; dead + pan1
Related forms
dead panner, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for deadpan
  • His deadpan evocation of flat, bright figures had an everyday quality that linked them to commercial art and popular culture.
  • Then you enter a script to make those characters speak, in their deadpan robot tones.
  • She can subtly seethe with quiet rage, then ever-so-smoothly switch to deadpan humor and remain equally convincing.
  • Their deadpan earnestness in improbable situations helps make this broad comedy work.
  • But there is a limit to how much charm, and how many laughs, he can wring out of deadpan idiocy.
  • The deadpan tone is interrupted by moments of pure lunacy.
  • Grace is handsome and slender, with a deadpan delivery and an aura of shrewdness.
  • After a ghastly pause, he stammers and makes a deadpan joke, barely retrieving the situation.
  • His routine was to carry a newspaper onstage and refer to it, adding commentary so deadpan that audiences at first didn't get it.
  • The story of his subsequent seduction by the widow is told in the same droll, deadpan style.
British Dictionary definitions for deadpan


adjective, adverb
with a deliberately emotionless face or manner: deadpan humour
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 deadpan

1928, from dead (adj.) + pan (n.) in slang sense of "face."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for deadpan



: my wife's New York ironies or her deadpan humor/ This is known as the deadpan system of prevarication

  1. An expressionless face; poker face
  2. A person with an expressionless face: Buster Keaton and Fred Allen were classic deadpans

: With kids packing his audiences, he deadpanned ''I promise to lower the voting age to 6'' (1930s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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