Definitions

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

  • adj. Characterized by or exhibiting decorum; proper: decorous behavior.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Marked by proper behavior.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Suitable to a character, or to the time, place, and occasion; marked with decorum; becoming; proper; seemly; befitting

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Characterized by or conspicuous for decorum; proper; decent; especially (of persons), formally polite and proper in speech and conduct.
  • Synonyms Fit, seemly, comely, orderly, appropriate.

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

  • adj. characterized by propriety and dignity and good taste in manners and conduct
  • adj. according with custom or propriety

Etymologies

From Latin decōrus, becoming, handsome, from decor, seemliness, beauty; see dek- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • Our definition of "decorous" is rather stodgy and inhibited compared to much of the rest of the civilized world.

    Joe Wilson's "You Lie!" | What Actually Happened...

  • Nothing of the Endicott in face or manner, nothing tragical, the expression decorous and formal, perhaps a trifle quizzical, as this was their first meeting since the interview in

    The Art of Disappearing

  • Years back, before either had married, they had luxuriated together in what would today be termed an affair, although neither then would have conceived of applying a title so decorous to the things they were doing with each other so ardently and incessantly, with never a pledge or serious care of a future together.

    Closing Time

  • Smuts said the coverage also gave the always "decorous" policy unit head and minister of public enterprises, Jeff Radebe, a shot at selling and answering questions on the party's election manifesto.

    ANC Daily News Briefing

  • So he really has been actually kind of decorous in what he has been willing to say.

    CNN Transcript Nov 17, 2002

  • You have yet to hear the 'decorous' and thrilling part of my tale.

    Molly Bawn

  • This lasted until spring; then came a sensation and scandal, such as decorous Heatherton had not known since the time

    Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, 1896 to 1901

  • She has expressed ambivalence when asked, which is either a decorous reluctance to appear too eager for the brass ring or a reflection of real doubt.

    Rhee's successor escapes her shadow; challenges remain

  • His decorous declarations ringing in freedom from behind the bars of a Birmingham cell -- daring to call forth those things that be not as though they were.

    Bishop T.D. Jakes: Honoring Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • So at four in the morning, I went into the "massage room" and fell asleep while receiving a very decorous shiatsu massage by a man who kept reminding me to make sure my kimono was tightly shut.

    Karin Badt: An All-Night Bath Experience In Tokyo (PHOTOS)