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90s Slang You Should Know


[dee-suh n-see] /ˈdi sən si/
noun, plural decencies.
the state or quality of being decent.
conformity to the recognized standard of propriety, good taste, modesty, etc.
  1. the recognized standards of decent or proper behavior; proprieties:
    The least you can expect from them is some respect for the decencies.
  2. the requirements or amenities for decent or comfortable living:
    to be able to afford the decencies.
Origin of decency
1560-70; < Latin decentia comeliness, decency, equivalent to decent- (stem of decēns) fitting (see decent) + -ia noun suffix
2. decorum, respectability, gentility. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for decencies
Historical Examples
  • It sounded like decent British hot temper, which he had often found accompanied honest British decencies.

    The Shuttle Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • No reasons can justify such an extraordinary breach of all the—the decencies.

    Bob, Son of Battle Alfred Ollivant
  • This habit of observance of the decencies of life appears to be common to all nations.

    Chats on Costume G. Woolliscroft Rhead
  • One must preserve the decencies of life; one must make a good appearance in the field!

    The Long Roll Mary Johnston
  • The man was perpetually defying the decencies and delicacies which were as perfume in Braybrooke's nostrils.

    December Love Robert Hichens
  • All the decencies in the world should sink before he thought her a traitor.

    The Coast of Chance Esther Chamberlain
  • He's on the jump, and hasn't much fancy for the decencies of life.

    The Man in the Twilight Ridgwell Cullum
  • How wretchedly do we fall short of the decencies of Heathenism!

  • She never moots or shocks, or pushes one back, but she dont go any further, content to dwell in decencies for ever.

    Miss Eden's Letters Emily Eden
  • Too many of our topographers, content to dwell in decencies for ever!

    Chronicles of London Bridge Richard Thompson
British Dictionary definitions for decencies


plural noun
the decencies, those things that are considered necessary for a decent life
standards of behaviour considered correct by polite society; proprieties


noun (pl) -cies
conformity to the prevailing standards of propriety, morality, modesty, etc
the quality of being decent
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 decencies



1560s, "appropriateness," from Latin decentia "comeliness, decency," from decentem "becoming, fitting" (see decent). Meaning "modesty" (i.e. "appropriateness to standards of society") is from 1630s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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