diffident

[dif-i-duhnt]
adjective
1.
lacking confidence in one's own ability, worth, or fitness; timid; shy.
2.
restrained or reserved in manner, conduct, etc.
3.
Archaic. distrustful.

Origin:
1425–75; late Middle English < Latin diffīdent- (stem of diffīdēns mistrusting, despairing present participle of diffīdere), equivalent to dif- dif- + fīd- trust + -ent- -ent

diffidently, adverb
diffidentness, noun
nondiffident, adjective
nondiffidently, adverb
undiffident, adjective
undiffidently, adverb


1. self-conscious, self-effacing, abashed, embarrassed, modest, unassuming, unconfident. See shy1.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To diffident
Collins
World English Dictionary
diffident (ˈdɪfɪdənt)
 
adj
lacking self-confidence; timid; shy
 
[C15: from Latin diffīdere to distrust, from dis- not + fīdere to trust]
 
'diffidence
 
n
 
'diffidently
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

diffident
1590s, from L. diffidentem, prp. of diffidere (see diffidence). Related: Diffidently.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Yet, despite the bragging, it seemed to me a diffident and unconfident
  performance.
She's more reserved and diffident, he's a chatterbox.
He has attracted many students from the fringe of prejudice who for various
  reasons felt diffident about the other race.
By her admission, she was a diffident student in school, and "not
  confident enough in my facts and figures" to lead any causes.
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature