Definitions

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

  • adj. Using or marked by the use of few words; terse or concise. See Synonyms at silent.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Using as few words as possible; pithy and concise.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Expressing much in few words, after the manner of the Laconians or Spartans; brief and pithy; concise; brusque; epigrammatic. In this sense laconic is the usual form.
  • adj. Laconian; characteristic of, or like, the Spartans; hence, stern or severe; cruel; unflinching.
  • n. Laconism.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Pertaining to Laconia or its inhabitants; Lacedæmonian or Spartan.
  • Expressing much in few words, after the manner of the ancient Laconians; sententious; pithy; short; brief: as, a laconic phrase.
  • Characteristic of the Laconians; inexorable; stern; severe.
  • Synonyms Condensed, Succinct, etc. See concise.
  • n. Conciseness of language; laconicism.
  • n. A concise, pithy expression; something expressed in a concise, pithy manner; a laconism: chiefly used in the plural: as, to talk in laconics.
  • n. In ancient prosody, an anapestic tetrameter catalectic with a spondee instead of the penultimate anapest . So called as a variety of the tetrameter used in the Laconian or Spartan embateria.

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

  • adj. brief and to the point; effectively cut short

Etymologies

Latin Lacōnicus, Spartan, from Greek Lakōnikos, from Lakōn, a Spartan (from the reputation of the Spartans for brevity of speech).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin Lacōnicus ("Spartan"), from Ancient Greek Λακωνικός (Lakōnikos, "Laconian"). Laconia was the region inhabited and ruled by the Spartans, who were known for their brevity in speech. (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

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  • Dictionary.com, He had a reputation for being laconic.

    November 5, 2010

  • What exactly is a skater boy?

    September 6, 2009

  • i always think of a high school skater boy who acts like he doesn't care by hardly nodding in response to things

    September 6, 2009

  • heh

    April 4, 2009

  • "a response so curt as to be almost rude"

    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/laconic

    April 3, 2009

  • True.

    August 16, 2008

  • Laconic tends to me more about spare speech, and spartan more about spare living....

    August 16, 2008

  • Ha ha! I remember that episode. "Angel" actually expanded my vocabulary a good bit. (Although I'm not sure if that's a good thing.)

    I use it all the time and people look at me and say "Wha?" I just laugh.

    February 20, 2008

  • ANGEL: Hey guys. (He looks up) Oz.
    OZ: Hey.
    ANGEL: Nice surprise.
    OZ: Thanks.
    ANGEL: Staying long?
    OZ: Few days.
    DOYLE: Are they always like this?
    OZ: No, we're usually laconic.

    Think Joss likes that word or something? :D

    December 18, 2007

  • Similar to spartan, for obvious reasons.

    January 14, 2007

  • "She's terse. I can be terse. Once in flight school, I was laconic."

    January 13, 2007