Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Intellectually, morally, or socially superior.
  • adj. Informal Pretentiously elegant or fashionable: a high-toned restaurant.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Having a pretentious, high-class attitude

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. High in tone or sound.
  • adj. Elevated; high-principled; honorable.
  • adj. pretentious, pompous.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • High in pitch: as, a high-toned instrument.
  • Having high principles; dignified; self-respecting: as, a high-toned character.
  • Stylish; fashionable; pretentious.

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

  • adj. pretentiously elegant

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • It was a very grave situation and we used to need to stroke our chins about whether bloggers or Paul Krugman were ruining the high-toned debate that had previously taken place between conservatives, right-wingers, the center-right, moderate Republicans, and reasonable liberals.

    Matthew Yglesias » Conservatives’ Unhinged Attacks on Nancy Pelosi

  • It was no doubt a little more than unsettling when the Sofitel Hotel, located on that high-toned stretch, attracted an enormous amount of attention recently.

    Shirin Sadeghi: Sex Scandal Is Peephole Into Manhattan Hotel Life

  • To tie together a book that covers the colonial-era tavern, the frontier barrelhouse, the high-toned New York City saloon, the German beer-garden, the speakeasy, the cocktail lounge, the gay bar and even the contemporary neo-speakeasy, a writer needs a grand theme.

    The All-American Place

  • With Hazel an 'Hattie an' Saxon an 'Possum, an' yours truly, an 'this high-toned wagon, folks most likely take us for millionaires out on a lark.

    CHAPTER XIV

  • Rather stylish and high-toned for a stenographer, I'd say.

    Chapter VI

  • A pretty idea she must have of him, a girl that was too high-toned to have anything to do with a good-looking, gentlemanly fellow like Morrison.

    Chapter VI

  • The American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the high-toned organization of scholars, artists, politicians and business leaders, broke with convention yesterday as it inducted Steve Miller, a rock musician credited with the creation of several words, as a member of the group.

    Elite Arts Group Names Steve Miller 1st Rock Member

  • Peering through the windows at the spectacles hosted by white planters, enslaved blacks would then prance and preen in imitation of whites at their own dances, using exaggerated movements, curtsys and bows to and adopting “high-toned” clothing to mock.

    The Cakewalk | Edwardian Promenade

  • Peering through the windows at the spectacles hosted by white planters, enslaved blacks would then prance and preen in imitation of whites at their own dances, using exaggerated movements, curtsys and bows to and adopting “high-toned” clothing to [...]

    2009 February | Edwardian Promenade

  • Lust too is a jewel, a sweet flower, and what pure happiness to know all our high-toned questions breed in a lively animal.

    Matthew Yglesias » 1.05 Girls for Every Boy

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