- silent; refraining from speech or utterance.
- not emitting or having sound of any kind.
- incapable of speech; dumb.
- (of letters) silent; not pronounced.
- Law. (of a person who has been arraigned) making no plea or giving an irrelevant response when arraigned, or refusing to stand trial (used chiefly in the phrase to stand mute).
- Fox Hunting. (of a hound) hunting a line without giving tongue or cry.
- Offensive. a person incapable of speech.
- an actor whose part is confined to dumb show.
- Law. a person who stands mute when arraigned.
- Also called sordino. a mechanical device of various shapes and materials for muffling the tone of a musical instrument.
- Phonetics. a stop.
- British Obsolete. a hired mourner at a funeral; a professional mourner.
- to deaden or muffle the sound of.
- to reduce the intensity of (a color) by the addition of another color.
Origin of mute
Examples from the Web for mute
Should Courage give up her war profiteering and settle down to run an honest pub—even if it means abandoning her mute girl?
The same thing happens when her mute daughter, the sweet Kattrin, is shot as she tries to warn a hamlet of impending slaughter.
I presume most Republicans will be clever enough to mute impeachment talk before November.The GOP’s Audacious Impeachment Spin Job
July 30, 2014
Kennedy proceeded on, having rendered Douglas mute as a result not of his position, but of his person.Michael Daly: My Last Day With JFK
November 11, 2013
The deaths of Lewis and Huxley were mute, private events, only reported in The Times three days later.Three Great Men Died That Day: JFK, C.S. Lewis, and Aldous Huxley
November 3, 2013
She could not be blind to the mute adoration of his gaze; nor could she resent it.The Black Bag
Louis Joseph Vance
It was hard to stand still and mute, and bear every thing, without reply.Tales And Novels, Volume 9 (of 10)
Tom sat down, looking from one face to another, in mute surprise.Life And Adventures Of Martin Chuzzlewit
A deaf person had heard, a mute had spoken, a consumptive had revived!
It was the mute, obstinate, eternal protest, and it was expectation also.
- not giving out sound or speech; silent
- unable to speak; dumb
- unspoken or unexpressedmute dislike
- law (of a person arraigned on indictment) refusing to answer a charge
- phonetics another word for plosive
- (of a letter in a word) silent
- a person who is unable to speak
- law a person who refuses to plead when arraigned on indictment for an offence
- any of various devices used to soften the tone of stringed or brass instruments
- phonetics a plosive consonant; stop
- a silent letter
- an actor in a dumb show
- a hired mourner at a funeral
- to reduce the volume of (a musical instrument) by means of a mute, soft pedal, etc
- to subdue the strength of (a colour, tone, lighting, etc)
- (of birds) to discharge (faeces)
- birds' faeces
Word Origin and History for mute
late 14c., mewet "silent," from Old French muet "dumb, mute" (12c.), diminutive of mut, mo, from Latin mutus "silent, speechless, dumb," probably from imitative base *meue- (cf. Sanskrit mukah "dumb," Greek myein "to be shut," of the mouth). Form assimilated in 16c. to Latin mutus.
1570s, "stage actor in a dumb show;" 1610s as "person who does not speak," from mute (adj.). Musical sense first recorded 1811 of stringed instruments, 1841, of horns.
- Unable or unwilling to speak.
- One who does not have the faculty of speech. No longer in technical use; considered offensive.