Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The quality of being bashful; excessive or extreme modesty; timorous shyness; want of confidence. [Formerly, like bashful, a term of commendation, equivalent to modesty.
- n. Synonyms Bashfulness, Modesty, Diffidence, Shyness, Coyness, timidity, sheepishness. Bashfulness, literally readiness to be abashed, designates timidity and a disturbed state of feeling at meeting with others, or being brought into any prominence. It is natural and not unbecoming to the young, but with advancing years seems a defect; it is often a transient state of feeling. Modesty goes deeper into the character; it is either a proper and becoming distrust of one's self and one's powers, or a high-minded freedom from assurance and assumption; it is always an excellence, unless explicitly said to be excessive. Diffidence is a defect; it is an undue distrust of self, with fear of being censured for failure, tending to unfit one for duty. Shyness is simply a constitutional shrinking from contact with others; it is the result of sensitiveness. Coyness is shyness where advances are made by others; a shrinking from familiarity, perhaps in a coquettish way.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. The quality of being bashful.
- n. feeling embarrassed due to modesty
- bashful + -ness (Wiktionary)
“Nuzhat al-Zaman bowed her head in bashfulness when she heard what he said and communed with herself,”
“Nay, farther," continued Mr. Silton, "there are two distinct sorts of what we call bashfulness; this, the awkwardness of a booby, which”
“Then we sat down to converse and I hung my head earthwards in bashfulness, but she delayed not long ere she set before me a tray of the most exquisite viands, marinated meats, fritters soaked in bee’s536 honeys and chickens stuffed with sugar and pistachio nuts, whereof we ate till we were satisfied.”
“Steele mentions with great tenderness that remarkable bashfulness, which is a cloak that hides and muffles merit; and tells us, that his abilities were covered only by modesty, which doubles the beauties which are seen, and gives credit and esteem to all that are concealed.”
“It does not seem, indeed, as if men were ever born modest, unless we dub with the name of modesty a sort of purely physical bashfulness, which is nearer to pride than is generally supposed.”
“He exhibits a reserve, diffidence, and even bashfulness, which is in some degree attractive, and leads the observer to thinly that the ferocious and bloodthirsty character imputed to the race must be grossly exaggerated.”
“Steele mentions, with great tenderness, "that remarkable bashfulness, which is a cloak that hides and muffles merit;" and tells us, "that his abilities were covered only by modesty, which doubles the beauties which are seen, and gives credit and esteem to all that are concealed.”
“She replied not without timidity, but without that hasty bashfulness which is so often taken for modesty.”
“He had a kind of bashfulness that a married man would have lost.”
“There may be many difficulties in your way, such as bashfulness, want of fluent speech, awkwardness of manner, and ignorance.”
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