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  1. pleasantly calm or peaceful; unruffled; tranquil; serenely quiet or undisturbed: placid waters.
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Origin of placid

1620–30; < Latin placidus calm, quiet, akin to placēre to please (orig., to calm); see -id4
Related formspla·cid·i·ty [pluh-sid-i-tee] /pləˈsɪd ɪ ti/, plac·id·ness, nounplac·id·ly, adverbun·plac·id, adjectiveun·plac·id·ly, adverbun·plac·id·ness, noun


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Examples from the Web for placidly

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The agent heard him placidly, as one who listens to a curious tale.

    The Forest

    Stewart Edward White

  • He was a man of quick temper, and perhaps he would not have taken it so placidly as I did.

  • "I—I don't think you'll tell me that," said Plowden, placidly.

    The Market-Place

    Harold Frederic

  • "He always was a strong healthy boy," said the old woman, placidly.


    Joseph Conrad

  • She was of the kind who fought out trouble silently, but not placidly.

    Garrison's Finish

    W. B. M. Ferguson

British Dictionary definitions for placidly


  1. having a calm appearance or nature
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Derived Formsplacidity (pləˈsɪdɪtɪ) or placidness, nounplacidly, adverb

Word Origin

C17: from Latin placidus peaceful; related to placēre to please
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 placidly



1620s, from French placide (15c.) and directly from Latin placidus "pleasing, peaceful, quiet, gentle, still, calm," from placere "to please" (see please). Related: Placidly; placidness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper