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PronunciationEdit

Etymology 1Edit

From Middle English humble, from Old French humble, umble, humle, from Latin humilis (low, slight, hence mean, humble) (compare Greek χαμαλός (khamalós, on the ground, low, trifling)), from humus (the earth, ground), humi (on the ground). See homage, and compare chameleon, humiliate.

The verb is from Middle English humblen (to humble).

AdjectiveEdit

humble (comparative humbler or more humble, superlative humblest or most humble)

  1. Not pretentious or magnificent; unpretending; unassuming.
    He lives in a humble one-bedroom cottage.
    • 17th century, Abraham Cowley, The Shortness of Life and Uncertainty of Riches
      The wise example of the heavenly lark.
      Thy fellow poet, Cowley, mark,
      Above the clouds let thy proud music sound,
      Thy humble nest build on the ground.
  2. Having a low opinion of oneself; not proud, arrogant, or assuming; modest.
    Synonyms: unassuming, modest
    • 2012 June 28, Jamie Jackson, “Wimbledon 2012: Lukas Rosol shocked by miracle win over Rafael Nadal”, in The Guardian[1], London:
      Rosol's 65 winners to Nadal's 41 was one of the crucial statistics in the 3hr 18min match that ended in a 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 triumph labelled a "miracle" by Rosol, who was humble enough to offer commiserations to Nadal.
    • early 18th century Matthew Prior, Cloe Jealous
      She shou'd be humble, who wou'd please
      And She must suffer, who can love.
    • 1611, King James Bible James 4:6:
      God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
SynonymsEdit
Derived termsEdit
Related termsEdit
TranslationsEdit
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

VerbEdit

humble (third-person singular simple present humbles, present participle humbling, simple past and past participle humbled)

  1. (transitive, intransitive) To defeat or reduce the power, independence, or pride of
    • 1848, Thomas Babington Macaulay The History of England from the Accession of James II Chapter XI
      But, after the death of the master, the servant proved himself capable of supplying with eminent ability the master's place, and was renowned throughout Europe as one of the great Triumvirate which humbled the pride of Lewis the Fourteenth.
    • c. 1603–1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of King Lear”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act IV, scene i]:
      Here, take this purse, thou whom the heaven's plagues have humbled to all strokes.
  2. (transitive, often reflexive) To make humble or lowly; to make less proud or arrogant; to make meek and submissive.
    • April 8, 2015, Dana Spiotta, T. C. Boyle’s ‘The Harder They Come’ in the New York Times
    • 1979, Leonard Cohen, Humbled in Love
      And you say you've been humbled in love. Cut down in your love. Forced to kneel in the mud next to me
      The final, quiet moments of the book return to Sten; his experience of his sick son humbles him, just as his aging body humbles him
    • 1769, King James Bible, 1 Peter 5:6
      Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you.
SynonymsEdit
Derived termsEdit
TranslationsEdit

Etymology 2Edit

NounEdit

humble (plural humbles)

  1. (Northern England, Scotland, also attributive) Alternative form of hummel.
    humble cattle

VerbEdit

humble (third-person singular simple present humbles, present participle humbling, simple past and past participle humbled)

  1. (transitive) Alternative form of hummel.

Further readingEdit


FrenchEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Old French, from Latin humilis (low, slight, hence mean, humble) (compare Greek χαμαλός (khamalós, on the ground, low, trifling)), from humus (the earth, ground), humi (on the ground).

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

humble (plural humbles)

  1. humble

Related termsEdit

Further readingEdit


Old FrenchEdit

AdjectiveEdit

humble m (oblique and nominative feminine singular humble)

  1. Alternative form of umble
    • circa 1170, Wace, Le Roman de Rou:
      Richart fu verz Dex humble, volentiers le servi
      Richard was humble towards God, and served him willingly

DeclensionEdit