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1. Frankness or sincerity of expression; openness.
2. Freedom from prejudice; impartiality.

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin, from candēre, to shine; see kand- in Indo-European roots.]


(ˈkæn dər)

1. the state or quality of being frank, open, and sincere in speech or expression; candidness.
2. freedom from bias; fairness; impartiality.
3. Obs. kindliness.
4. Obs. purity.
Also, esp. Brit.,can′dour.
[1600–10; < Latin: radiance, whiteness; see candid, -or1]




  1. About as sincere as the look upon the face of an undertaker conducting a nine-hundred-dollar funeral —H. L. Mencken
  2. As candid as the C.I.A. —Anon
  3. As devoted to candor as a high school valedictorian —Jonathan Valin
  4. As forthcoming as Pravda —Joseph Wambaugh
  5. As frank as a candid camera shot —Anon
  6. As open [about revealing self] as an unsteamed clam —Elyse Sommer
  7. As revealing as a locked diary —Anon
  8. Candid as mirrors —Robert G. Ingersoll
  9. Direct as a bullet —Flannery O’Connor
  10. Phony as a laugh track —Vincent Canby, about the movie Murphy’s Romance, New York Times, January 17, 1986
  11. Sincerity is like traveling on a plain beaten road, which commonly brings a man sooner to his journey’s end than by-ways in which men often lose themselves —John Tillotson
  12. Took off the mask of tranquility she had worn … like an actress returning weary to her room after a trying fifth act and falling half-dead upon a couch, while the audience retains an image of her to which she bears not the slightest resemblance —Honoré de Balzac
  13. (You get right) to the point … like a knife in the heart —Harvey Fierstein

    Fierstein’s simile is a line from La Cage aux Folles, the musical based on Jean Poire’s play by the same name.

  14. Two-sided, like Janus —L. P. Hartley
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.candor - ability to make judgments free from discrimination or dishonesty
impartiality, nonpartisanship - an inclination to weigh both views or opinions equally
2.candor - the quality of being honest and straightforward in attitude and speech
honestness, honesty - the quality of being honest
ingenuousness - openly straightforward or frank
References in classic literature ?
But there was an unconscious emphasis on the last word, and a wistful look in the eyes that never lost their childlike candor, which chilled Jo's heart for a minute with a forboding fear, and decided her to make her little venture `soon'.
Then the candor of the woman's whole existence, which every one might read, and which formed so striking a contrast to her own habitual reserve--this might have furnished a link.
In short, Uncas and his father became converts to his way of thinking, abandoning their own previously expressed opinions with a liberality and candor that, had they been the representatives of some great and civilized people, would have infallibly worked their political ruin, by destroying forever their reputation for consistency.
She stood there in so much of her candor and so little of her nightgown, with her pink bare feet and the golden glow of her curls.
He visited the Quaker, in high anger; but, being possessed of uncommon candor and fairness, was soon quieted by his arguments and representations.
Far too big, everybody says," replied Rebecca with an unexpected and thoroughly grown-up candor that induced Mr.
Again, we have known you long, and can put the most entire confidence in your truth, candor, and sincerity.
When I am acting with my customary candor, I am frank (as you know already) to the utmost verge of imprudence.
Let it be, then, our present occupation to inquire and endeavor to ascertain the causes first put in operation at the period of our commemoration, and already productive of such magnificent effects; to examine with reiterated care and minute attention the characters of those men who gave the first impulse to a new series of events in the history of the world; to applaud and emulate those qualities of their minds which we shall find deserving of our admiration; to recognize with candor those features which forbid approbation or even require censure, and, finally, to lay alike their frailties and their perfections to our own hearts, either as warning or as example.
Candor will oblige us to admit that even such men may be actuated by upright intentions; and it cannot be doubted that much of the opposition which has made its appearance, or may hereafter make its appearance, will spring from sources, blameless at least, if not respectable -- the honest errors of minds led astray by preconceived jealousies and fears.
The national government, in such cases, will not be affected by this pride, but will proceed with moderation and candor to consider and decide on the means most proper to extricate them from the difficulties which threaten them.
That this remaining task may be executed under impressions conducive to a just and fair result, some reflections must in this place be indulged, which candor previously suggests.