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

  • adj. Civil, courteous, and gentle in speech.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Using fair speech, or uttered with fairness; bland; civil; courteous; plausible.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Using fair speech; bland; civil; courteous; plausible.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • It may be added that, as being himself a blunt and downright Englishman, unaccustomed to conceal the slightest movement either of love or of dislike, he accounted the fair-spoken courtesy which the Scots had learned, either from imitation of their frequent allies, the

    The Talisman

  • Some thought it was easier counting with the auld rough knight than the fair-spoken young ane — but mair of that anon.


  • “A pretty lad was this fair-spoken archer of thine!” said the Prince her father to her; “and a pretty kettle of fish hast thou cooked for the fondest of fathers.”

    A Legend of the Rhine

  • The Bree-folk used to be fair-spoken to travellers, or so I had heard. '

    The Fellowship of the Ring

  • As I pass through the Customs I know I am in a new country: The colours and emblems are different; the civility - your candid, fair-spoken civility - is different; you are not as spendthrift as we - that is the Scotch in you - and you seem so much more intent on obeying the law.

    Books and Canada

  • Wolsey is near his master; his face is that of a man "exceeding wise, fair-spoken, and persuading"; he has a large, full brow, narrow and shrewd eyes, a delicate nose, and somewhat heavy and sensual cheeks.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 01, No. 01, November, 1857 A Magazine of Literature, Art, and Politics

  • Now the man into whose house he had turned, though he was a fair-spoken man, and one who knew well how to seem honest and true, was altogether a deceiver.

    The Rocky Island and Other Similitudes

  • He had that pardonable pride which will not allow a man to place himself among those who, though outwardly fair-spoken, offer the insult of a hostile and patronizing mental attitude.

    The Bibliotaph and Other People

  • The tongue was soft and fair-spoken, the hand seemed generous enough, but this by all accounts had been so even with Drimdarroch himself, and Drimdarroch was rotten to the core.

    Doom Castle

  • But the occasional frank air and pleasant word went for what they purported to be, the young sailor never having heard as yet of the "too fair-spoken man."

    Billy Budd


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