laconic


Also found in: Legal, Wikipedia.

la·con·ic

 (lə-kŏn′ĭk)
adj.
Using or marked by the use of few words; terse or concise.

[Latin Lacōnicus, Spartan, from Greek Lakōnikos, from Lakōn, a Spartan (from the reputation of the Spartans for brevity of speech).]

la·con′i·cal·ly adv.
Synonyms: laconic, reticent, taciturn, tightlipped
These adjectives describe people who are sparing with speech. Laconic denotes terseness or conciseness in expression, but when applied to people it often implies an unwillingness to use words: "Mountain dwellers and mountain lovers are a laconic tribe. They know the futility of words" (Edna Ferber).
Reticent suggests a reluctance to share one's thoughts and feelings: "She had been shy and reticent with me, and now ... she was telling me aloud the secrets of her inmost heart" (W.H. Hudson).
Taciturn implies unsociableness and a tendency to speak only when it is absolutely necessary: "At the Council board he was taciturn; and in the House of Lords he never opened his lips" (Thomas Macaulay).
Tightlipped strongly implies a steadfast unwillingness to divulge information being sought: He remained tightlipped when asked about his personal life.
Word History: The city of Sparta, the main city of the region of Laconia in the very south of mainland Greece, vied with Athens for the domination of Greece in ancient times. In order to foster and maintain a martial spirit, the Spartan upper classes endured a regimented life whose rigor was a source of amazement to their fellow Greeks. Once, when someone asked why the Spartans did not have magnificent city walls like other Greek cities, the Spartan king Agesilaus simply pointed to his fellow citizens, armed to the teeth, the most formidable soldiers in Greece: "Here are the walls of the Spartans." The austere life of the Spartan people is still remembered today when English speakers use the adjective spartan to describe a frugal meal or an ascetic lifestyle. The Spartans trained the mind as well as the body, and their speech was as pointed as their spears. The English adjective laconic, from Greek Lakōn "an inhabitant of Laconia, a Spartan," reflects the Spartan reputation for incisive brevity when speaking and the value they placed on not mincing words.

laconic

(ləˈkɒnɪk) or laconical
adj
1. (of a person's speech) using few words; terse
[C16: via Latin from Greek Lakōnikos, from Lakōn Laconian, Spartan; referring to the Spartans' terseness of speech]
laˈconically adv

la•con•ic

(ləˈkɒn ɪk)

adj.
using few words; terse; concise: a laconic reply.
[1580–90; < Latin Lacōnicus < Greek Lakōnikos Laconian =Lakōn a Laconian + -ikos -ic]
la•con′i•cal•ly, adv.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.laconic - brief and to the point; effectively cut short; "a crisp retort"; "a response so curt as to be almost rude"; "the laconic reply; `yes'"; "short and terse and easy to understand"
concise - expressing much in few words; "a concise explanation"

laconic

adjective terse, short, brief, clipped, to the point, crisp, compact, concise, curt, succinct, pithy, monosyllabic, sententious Usually so laconic in the office, he seemed more relaxed.
rambling, long-winded, wordy, voluble, loquacious, verbose
Translations

laconic

[ləˈkɒnɪk] ADJlaconico

laconic

[ləˈkɒnɪk] adjlaconique

laconic

adjlakonisch; prose, styleknapp

laconic

[ləˈkɒnɪk] adjlaconico/a
References in classic literature ?
But their father, though very laconic in his expressions of pleasure, was really glad to see them; he had felt their importance in the family circle.
Even so, our acquaintance might have been no more than a hand-grip and a word-- he was a laconic old fellow--had it not been for the drinking.
Notwithstanding the importance of the challenge, on the 19th of May he received a sealed packet containing the following superbly laconic reply: