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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Silence


SI'LENCE, noun [Latin silentium, from sileo, to be still.]

1. In a general sense, stillness, or entire absence of sound or noise; as the silence of midnight.

2. In animals, the state of holding the peace; forbearance of speech in man, or of noise in other animals. I was dumb with silence; I held my peace, even from good. Psalms 39:2.

3. Habitual taciturnity; opposed to loquacity.

4. Secrecy. These things were transacted in silence

5. Stillness; calmness; quiet; cessation of rage, agitation or tumult; as the elements reduced to silence

6. Absence of mention; oblivion, Eternal silence be their doom. And what most merits fame, in silence hid.

7. silence in used elliptically for let there be silence an injunction to keep silence

SI'LENCE, verb transitive

1. To oblige to hold the peace; to restrain from noise or speaking.

2. To still; to quiet; to restrain; to appease. This would silence all further opposition. These would have silenced their scruples.

3. To stop; as, to silence complaints or clamor.

4. To still; to cause to cease firing; as, to silence guns or a battery.

5. To restrain from preaching by revoking a license to preach; as, to silence a minister of the gospel. The Rev. Thomas Hooker, of Chelmsford in Essex, was silenced for non-conformity.

6. To put an end to; to cause to cease. The question between agriculture and commerce has received a decision which has silenced the rivalships between them.