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used in a sentence
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Definition hesitant and unassertive — often due to a lack of self-confidence
  • She is diffident around adults, but dominant with her peer group.
diffident = hesitant and unassertive
  • She is so diffident, I can't imagine her as president of the organization.
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive
  • Gabriel waited again and then, fearing that diffidence was about to conquer him, he said abruptly: "By the way, Gretta!"
    James Joyce  --  Dubliners
  • diffidence = hesitancy and unassertiveness due to a lack of self-confidence
  • There were diffident raps at the factory window.
    Kurt Vonnegut  --  Slaughterhouse-Five
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive due to a lack of self-confidence
  • He talked quietly and easily, with a diffidence which Leamas had never seen in him before.
    John Le Carre  --  The Spy Who Came In From The Cold
  • diffidence = hesitancy and unassertiveness — apparently due to a lack of self-confidence
  • My old fears, my diffidence, my shyness, my hopeless sense of inferiority, must be conquered now and thrust aside.
    Daphne du Maurier  --  Rebecca
  • diffidence = hesitancy and unassertiveness due to a lack of self-confidence
  • He looked so stern that I grew alarmed.
    "Do not concern yourself," I said diffidently.
    Kamala Markandaya  --  Nectar in a Sieve
  • diffidently = with hesitancy and unassertiveness
  • Speak out, my boy—don't be diffident.
    Mark Twain  --  The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive due to a lack of self-confidence
  • Blanquet spoke of this afterwards with much diffidence...
    Ernest Hemingway  --  For Whom the Bell Tolls
  • diffidence = lack of self-confidence
  • His parents are diffident around Maxine, at first keeping their distance, not boisterous as they typically are around their Bengali friends.
    Jhumpa Lahiri  --  The Namesake
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive
  • So Cedric, sensing this diffident fascination, smiles at all comers but offers few openings.
    Ron Suskind  --  A Hope in the Unseen
  • diffident = hesitant and unassuming
  • Gitano laid his hat on the floor and diffidently sat down.  He wouldn't reach for food. Carl had to pass it to him.
    John Steinbeck  --  The Red Pony
  • diffidently = with hesitancy and unassertiveness
  • After a time he began to sidle near to the youth, and in a diffident way try to make him a friend.
    Stephen Crane  --  The Red Badge of Courage
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive
  • Here I am, a shy, diffident sort of man.
    George Bernard Shaw  --  Pygmalion
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive
  • I saw Roskus watching me ... diffident, secret, inarticulate and sad.
    William Faulkner  --  The Sound and the Fury
  • diffident = hesitant and unassertive due to a lack of self-confidence
  • Buddy stood before him, diffident, smiling.
    Richard Wright  --  Native Son
  • diffident = unassertive
  • They had something in common - a kind of diffidence.
    Graham Greene  --  The Power and the Glory
  • diffidence = hesitancy and unassertiveness
  • Somehow we landed on the subject of Pim's extreme diffidence.
    Anne Frank  --  The Diary of a Young Girl
  • diffidence = unassertiveness
  • He began a little diffidently, avoiding her gaze, but he gathered courage as he went along.
    Arundhati Roy  --  The God of Small Things
  • diffidently = with hesitancy and unassertiveness
  • He coughs diffidently.
    Tennessee Williams  --  A Streetcar Named Desire
diffidently = unassertively (as if wishing not to bother anyone)

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