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[non-kuh-mit-l] /ˌnɒn kəˈmɪt l/
not committing oneself, or not involving committal, to a particular view, course, or the like:
The senator gave us a noncommittal answer.
Origin of noncommittal
An Americanism dating back to 1820-30; non- + committal
Related forms
noncommittally, adverb
indefinite, vague, equivocal, evasive, guarded. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for non-committal
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The other seemed to be judging him in a non-committal sort of way.

    White Fang Jack London
  • "I suppose the captain is obliged to be non-committal," I observed.

    Kent Knowles: Quahaug Joseph C. Lincoln
  • "Most men want to marry her," was the father's non-committal response.

    The Market-Place Harold Frederic
  • "I just didn't want them about," was the prisoner's non-committal answer.

  • Mr. Mix smiled again, and hoped that his expression was taken to be non-committal.

    Rope Holworthy Hall
  • The latter returned the action with a non-committal countenance.

    The False Chevalier William Douw Lighthall
  • Sir John's reply was non-committal, but not wholly discouraging.

  • "Well, you've got back," said the superintendent in a non-committal tone.

    The Grell Mystery Frank Froest
  • Was ever actual thorn more motionless or non-committal than most of these?

    My Studio Neighbors William Hamilton Gibson
British Dictionary definitions for non-committal


not involving or revealing commitment to any particular opinion or course of action: a noncommittal reply
(rare) having no outstanding quality, meaning, etc
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 non-committal

also noncommittal, 1829, "characterized by refusal to commit oneself," from non- + committal (see commit).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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