Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The quality of being earnest; sincerity; seriousness.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The state or quality of being earnest; intentness; anxiety.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Intentness or zeal in the pursuit of anything; eagerness; strong or eager desire; energetic striving: as, to seek or ask with earnestness; to engage in a work with earnestness.
  • n. Anxious care; solicitude; strength of feeling; seriousness: as, a man of great earnestness; the charge was maintained with much earnestness.
  • n. Synonyms 1. Zeal, Enthusiasm, etc. See eagerness.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the trait of being serious
  • n. an earnest and sincere feeling

Etymologies

earnest +‎ -ness (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Since there is a certain earnestness and intensity ...

    Liliana Rodrigues: Behind the Lens of Dutch Photographer Anton Corbijn

  • Kev, I tend tend be jovial by nature but I do not accept that earnestness is the same as seriousness.

    A Fire Raging in Islington

  • It could use a little more wisecracking and a little less breathless earnestness, but breathless earnestness is just so you!!!!

    Frequently Asked Questions

  • It was well for the success of Mac's first crusade that his hearers were gentlemen and sober, so his outburst was not received with jeers or laughter but listened to in silence, while the expression of the faces changed from one of surprise to regret and respect, for earnestness is always effective and championship of this sort seldom fails to touch hearts as yet unspoiled.

    Rose in Bloom

  • And what deep earnestness is conveyed by the redoubling of this title!

    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

  • Human prudence is not willing to perform every duty in earnestness and humility, and trust the rest to Providence.

    The Mother's Book

  • May I, in the name of and for the sake of Empire solidarity and unity, which I assure you in all earnestness is as dear to me as I know it is to you, pray to you to try to see through the maze of misrepresentation, misunderstanding and misconception, often deliberately built around India, and to refrain from saying or doing that which may at this crucial moment of our history, when the fate of India hangs in the balance, harm the very interest so dear to our hearts.

    New India

  • The worrying and earnestness is my job — the playing and innocence is Miss Baby’s.

    When Bad Things Happen To Good Dolls | Her Bad Mother

  • Nina turns too, a smile placed on her face where the earnestness was a moment before.

    Perfect Match

  • Her husband, in coaching her for the coming campaign at Washington, had told her earnestness was her strong suit; that her deep, deliberate voice was her best card, but she held in her eyes, unquestionably, both bowers.

    The Rim of the Desert

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.