From Middle English stilnesse, from Old English stilnes (“stillness, quiet; absence of noise or disturbance, release, relaxation; silence, abstention from speech; absence of disturbance or molestation, tranquility, peace, security; that which appeases”), equivalent to still + -ness.
- The quality or state of being still; quietness; silence; calmness; inactivity.
- Habitual silence or quiet; taciturnity.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.