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90s Slang You Should Know


[kuh m-pley-suh n-see] /kəmˈpleɪ sən si/
noun, plural complacencies.
a feeling of quiet pleasure or security, often while unaware of some potential danger, defect, or the like; self-satisfaction or smug satisfaction with an existing situation, condition, etc.
  1. friendly civility; inclination to please; complaisance.
  2. a civil act.
Also, complacence
[kuh m-pley-suh ns] /kəmˈpleɪ səns/ (Show IPA)
Origin of complacency
From the Medieval Latin word complacentia, dating back to 1635-45. See complacent, -cy
Related forms
noncomplacence, noun
noncomplacency, noun, plural noncomplacencies.
overcomplacence, noun
overcomplacency, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for complacence
Contemporary Examples
  • A politician will only be as resolute as the citizen, and Indian sensitivities have been dulled by a culture of complacence.

Historical Examples
British Dictionary definitions for complacence


noun (pl) -cencies, -cences
a feeling of satisfaction, esp extreme self-satisfaction; smugness
an obsolete word for complaisance
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 complacence

mid-15c., "pleasure," from Medieval Latin complacentia "satisfaction, pleasure," from Latin complacentem (nominative complacens), present participle of complacere "to be very pleasing," from com-, intensive prefix (see com-), + placere "to please" (see please). Sense of "pleased with oneself" is 18c.



1640s, from same source as complacence but with the later form of the suffix (see -cy).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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