American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Shy, self-conscious, and awkward in the presence of others. See Synonyms at shy1.
- adj. Characterized by, showing, or resulting from shyness, self-consciousness, or awkwardness.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Wanting in self-possession; fearful; dismayed.
- Easily put to confusion; modest to excess; diffident; shy; sheepish.
- Indicative of, accompanied with, or proceeding from bashfulness.
- Exciting bashfulness or shame.
- adj. this sense?) inclined to avoid notice
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. obsolete Abashed; daunted; dismayed.
- adj. Very modest, or modest to excess; constitutionally disposed to shrink from public notice; indicating extreme or excessive modesty; shy.
- adj. disposed to avoid notice
- adj. self-consciously timid
- Aphesis of abashed + -ful (“full of”). (Wiktionary)
- From Middle English basshe, from basshed, past participle of basshen, to be discomfited, probably variant of abaishen; see abash. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“He was roundly congratulated on having salvaged the ship, for in the days before he sailed, the Paragon became known as a bashful but courteous ship, given to few words but occasionally smiling so as to melt anyone's heart.”
“To her father's disgust she bought them both, and presented them to two wide-eyed children who in bashful fascination were dogging their footsteps.”
“The others called the bashful, baby-faced Talib "The Doctor.”
“Now over here, folks, we have a formation called the bashful elephant.”
“But wisdom makes men bashful, which is the reason that those wise men have so little to do, unless it be with poverty, hunger, and chimney corners; that they live such neglected, unknown, and hated lives: whereas fools abound in money, have the chief commands in the commonwealth, and in a word, flourish every way.”
“After supper that evening, Uncle Kit suggested that we visit the emigrant camp and see the ladies, which did not altogether meet with my approval, but rather than be called bashful, I went along with the crowd.”
“Lord George professed that he had observed the same thing; but then, as he whispered into Mr. Nappie's ear, Mr. Greystock was particularly known as a bashful man.”
“Hall was kind of bashful when he was offerin 'me work.”
“Ruth recently was praying for me, and felt that God used the word "bashful" in reference to me.”
“I guess she makes you kind of bashful the way she does me," from which David gathered with an odd sense of shock that Eleanor felt there was something to criticize in his conduct, if she had permitted herself to look for it.”
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