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docile

[dos-uh l; British doh-sahyl]
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adjective
  1. easily managed or handled; tractable: a docile horse.
  2. readily trained or taught; teachable.
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Origin of docile

1475–85; < Latin docilis readily taught, equivalent to doc(ēre) to teach + -ilis -ile
Related formsdoc·ile·ly, adverbdo·cil·i·ty [do-sil-i-tee, doh-] /dɒˈsɪl ɪ ti, doʊ-/, noun

Synonyms

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1. manageable, malleable; obedient.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for docility

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Nature has provided for this by evolving the instinct of docility.

  • He helped his sister with blind love and docility in her household duties.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • He had been early trained to gentleness, docility, and goodness.

  • The team was purely American—that is to say, almost human in its intelligence and docility.

    American Notes

    Rudyard Kipling

  • This secret of success was was only to be won by the development of a temper, a spirit of docility.

    Albert Durer

    T. Sturge Moore


British Dictionary definitions for docility

docile

adjective
  1. easy to manage, control, or discipline; submissive
  2. rare ready to learn; easy to teach
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Derived Formsdocilely, adverbdocility (dəʊˈsɪlɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin

C15: from Latin docilis easily taught, from docēre to teach
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 docility

n.

1550s, from French docilité (15c.), from Latin docilitatem (nominative docilitas), from docilis (see docile).

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docile

adj.

late 15c., "easily taught," from Italian or French docile, from Latin docilis "easily taught," from docere "teach" (see doctor). Sense of "obedient, submissive" first recorded 1774.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper