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understatement

Definition:

a statement that is restrained in ironic contrast to what might have been said

Class:

communication noun (communicative processes and contents)

Related to:

understate

Plural:

understatements

Original source:

Princeton WordNet

Example:

litotes

Etymology:

"under" + "statement". Understated, with reference to clothing, is recorded from...
(Source: Online Etymology)  [more]

Definition references

Wikipedia:

Understatement

a form of speech which contains an expression of less strength than what would be expected. This is not to be confused with euphemism, where a polite phrase is used in place of a harsher or more offensive expression. Understatement is a staple of... (44 of 730 words)

en​.wikipedia​.org​/wiki​/Understatement

Collins Dictionary:

understatement

the act or an instance of stating something in restrained terms, or as less than it is (17 of 358 words, 9 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.collinsdictionary​.com​/dictionary​/english​/understatement

Macmillan British Dictionary:

understatement | understatements [plural]

[countable] a statement that makes something seem less important, serious, big etc than it really is ; [uncountable] the practice of using an ... (23 of 68 words, 2 usage examples, pronunciation)

www​.macmillandictionary​.com​/dictionary​/british​/understatement

Cambridge Dictionary:

understatement

a statement that describes something in a way that makes it seem less important, serious, bad, etc. than it really is, or the practice of making such ... (27 of 67 words, 2 usage examples, pronunciations)

dictionary​.cambridge​.org​/dictionary​/british​/understatement

Oxford Dictionary:

understatement

the presentation of something as being smaller or less good or important than it really is (16 of 59 words, 2 usage examples, pronunciation)

oxforddictionaries​.com​/definition​/english​/understatement

New World Dictionary:

understate | understated [past tense] | understating [present participle] | understatement [noun, related]

to make a weaker statement of than is warranted by truth, accuracy, or importance; state too weakly | to state, express, etc. in a style that is ... (26 of 43 words, 2 definitions, pronunciation)

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/understate

American Heritage Dictionary:

understatement

A disclosure or statement that is less than complete. | Restraint or lack of emphasis in expression, as for rhetorical effect. | Restraint in artistic ... (23 of 28 words, 3 definitions, pronunciation)

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/understatement

Wiktionary:

understatement | understatements [plural]

a disclosure or statement that is less than complete | restraint or lack of emphasis, especially for ironic effect (18 of 22 words, 2 definitions)

en​.wiktionary​.org​/wiki​/understatement

Merriam-Webster:

statement | proposition [sense-specific, synonym] | assertion [synonym, sense-specific] | account [synonym, sense-specific] | check [synonym, sense-specific] | invoice [synonym, sense-specific] | bill [entry 1, synonym, sense-specific] | tab [synonym, sense-specific] | receipt [similar, sense-specific] | ...

something stated: as ; a single declaration or remark; "assertion" ; a report of facts or opinions | the act or process of stating or presenting ... (25 of 216 words, 7 definitions, 1 usage example, pronunciation)

www​.merriam-webster​.com​/dictionary​/statement

Random House Dictionary:

statement | stmt [abbreviation]

something stated. | a communication or declaration in speech or writing, setting forth facts, particulars, etc. | a single sentence or assertion. | ... (20 of 130 words, 8 definitions, 2 usage examples, pronunciation)

dictionary​.infoplease​.com​/statement

Encarta Dictionary:

understatement | understatements [plural]

a statement, or a way of expressing yourself, that is deliberately less forceful or dramatic than the subject would seem to justify or require | a ... (25 of 51 words, 2 definitions, pronunciation)

encarta​.msn​.com​/dictionary 1861707810​/definition​.html  [offline]

Etymology reference

Online Etymology:

understatement

First use: 1799

Origin: "under" + "statement". Understated, with reference to clothing, is recorded from 1957.

www​.etymonline​.com​/index​.php term=understatement

Audio references

Collins Dictionary:

understatement

Audio: British English pronunciation of "understatement"

www​.collinsdictionary​.com​/dictionary​/english​/understatement

Macmillan British Dictionary:

understatement | understatements [plural]

Audio: British English pronunciation of "understatement"

www​.macmillandictionary​.com​/dictionary​/british​/understatement

Macmillan American Dictionary:

understatement | understatements [plural]

Audio: North American pronunciation of "understatement"

www​.macmillandictionary​.com​/dictionary​/american​/understatement

Cambridge Dictionary:

understatement

Audio 1: British English pronunuciation of "understatement"

Audio 2: North American English pronunuciation of "understatement"

dictionary​.cambridge​.org​/dictionary​/british​/understatement

the Free Dictionary:

understatement

Audio 1: North American English pronunciation of "understatement"

Audio 2: British English pronunciation of "understatement"

Audio 3: North American English pronunciation of "understatement" by speech synthesizer

www​.thefreedictionary​.com​/understatement

Google Dictionary:

understatement | understatements [plural]

Audio: English pronunciation of "understatement"

www​.google​.com​/#hl=en&tbs=dfn​:1&fp=1&q=understatement

Merriam-Webster Pronunciation:

understatement

Audio: North American pronunciation of "understatement"

www​.merriam-webster​.com​/audio​.php file=unders​30 word=understatement

YourDictionary Audio:

understatement

Audio: North American English pronunciation of "understatement" by speech synthesizer

www​.yourdictionary​.com​/understatement

Page last updated: 2013-06-26

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