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Word of the Day
Sunday, April 03, 2016

Definitions for brevity

  1. the quality of expressing much in few words; terseness: Ironically, it is long-winded Polonius in Shakespeare's Hamlet who famously says that brevity is the soul of wit.
  2. shortness of time or duration; briefness: the brevity of human life.

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Citations for brevity
Therefore, since brevity is the soul of wit, / And tediousness the limbs and outward flourishes, / I will be brief. Your noble son is mad … William Shakespeare, Hamlet, 1604
The new, post-print literary media are certainly amenable to brevity. The blog post and the tweet may be ephemeral rather than lapidary, but the culture in which they thrive is fed by a craving for more narrative and a demand for pith. A. O. Scott, "Brevity's Pull: In Praise of the American Short Story," New York Times, April 4, 2009
Origin of brevity
1500-1510
Brevity can be traced to the Latin brevis meaning "short." It entered English in the early 1500s.