understatement

[ uhn-der-steyt-muh nt, uhn-der-steyt- ]
/ ˌʌn dərˈsteɪt mənt, ˈʌn dərˌsteɪt- /

noun

the act or an instance of understating, or representing in a weak or restrained way that is not borne out by the facts: The journalist wrote that the earthquake had caused some damage. This turned out to be a massive understatement of the devastation.

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Origin of understatement

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for understatement

British Dictionary definitions for understatement

understatement
/ (ˌʌndəˈsteɪtmənt) /

noun

the act or an instance of stating something in restrained terms, or as less than it is
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

Cultural definitions for understatement

understatement

A form of irony in which something is intentionally represented as less than it is: “Hank Aaron was a pretty good ball player.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.