[ dif-i-duh ns ]
/ ˈdɪf ɪ dəns /


the quality or state of being diffident.

Nearby words

  1. differentiator,
  2. differently,
  3. difficile,
  4. difficult,
  5. difficulty,
  6. diffident,
  7. diffidently,
  8. diffluence,
  9. diffluent,
  10. difflugia

Origin of diffidence

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin diffīdentia mistrust, want of confidence. See diffident, -ence

Related formsnon·dif·fi·dence, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for diffidence

Word Origin and History for diffidence



c.1400, from Latin diffidentia "mistrust, distrust, want of confidence," from diffidere "to mistrust, lack confidence," from dis- "away" (see dis-) + fidere "to trust" (see faith). Modern sense is of "distrusting oneself" (1650s). The original sense was the opposite of confidence.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper