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meek

[meek]
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adjective, meek·er, meek·est.
  1. humbly patient or docile, as under provocation from others.
  2. overly submissive or compliant; spiritless; tame.
  3. Obsolete. gentle; kind.
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Origin of meek

1150–1200; Middle English meke, meoc < Old Norse mjūkr soft, mild, meek
Related formsmeek·ly, adverbmeek·ness, nouno·ver·meek, adjectiveo·ver·meek·ly, adverbo·ver·meek·ness, noun

Synonyms

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1. forbearing; yielding; unassuming; pacific, calm, soft. See gentle.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for meek

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Anaxagoras retained his usual bland expression and meek dignity.

    Philothea

    Lydia Maria Child

  • Good, meek creature:—But you were upon your overtures just now!

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • But that mild and meek man had a certain strength of pertinacity.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • But Alice was supposed to be a widow; and Alice was so meek, so docile, so motherly.

  • Learn of Me that I am meek and lowly, and ye shall find rest to your souls.

    Albert Durer

    T. Sturge Moore


British Dictionary definitions for meek

meek

adjective
  1. patient, long-suffering, or submissive in disposition or nature; humble
  2. spineless or spiritless; compliant
  3. an obsolete word for gentle
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Derived Formsmeekly, adverbmeekness, noun

Word Origin

C12: related to Old Norse mjūkr amenable; compare Welsh mwytho to soften
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

Word Origin and History for meek

adj.

c.1200, "gentle, quiet, unaggressive; benevolent, kind; courteous, humble, unassuming;" of a woman, "modest," from a Scandinavian source (cf. Old Norse mjukr "soft, pliant, gentle"), from Proto-Germanic *meukaz (cf. Gothic muka-modei "humility," Dutch muik "soft"), of uncertain origin, perhaps from PIE *meug- "slippery, slimy." In the Bible, it translates Latin mansuetus from Vulgate (see mansuetude). Sense of "submissive" is from mid-14c.

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n.

"those who are meek," c.1200, from meek (adj.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper