Word of The Day for Thursday, March 17, 2011


tim•or•ous (TIM-er-uhs)  adj

1. full of fear; fearful
2. subject to fear
3. characterized by or indicating fear
(timid  is used of a person's character or disposition; timorous  is used of a person's action or behavior)

timorousness noun;  timorously adverb

mid-15c; from O.Fr. temeros (14c.), from M.L. timorosus "fearful," from L;. timor "fear," from timere "to fear"

Synonyms: afraid, apprehensive, faint, fainthearted, fearful, hesitant, meek, shrinking, shuddering, shy, tentative, timid, tremulous, unassertive
Related Words: timid

Sentence Examples:
• You shun me, Chloe, like a fawn that is seeking its timorous mother in the pathless mountains, not without a vain dread of the breezes and the thickets: for she trembles both in her heart and knees, whether the arrival of the spring has terrified by its rustling leaves, or the green lizards have stirred the bush. But I do not follow you, like a savage tigress, or a Gaetulian lion, to tear you to pieces. Therefore, quit your mother, now that you are mature for a husband. -The Works of Horace

• Having thus acknowledged what I owe those who have aided and approved me, I turn to another class; a small one, so far as I know, but not, therefore, to be overlooked.  I mean the timorous or carping few who doubt the tendency of such books as “Jane Eyre:” in whose eyes whatever is unusual is wrong; whose ears detect in each protest against bigotry—that parent of crime—an insult to piety, that regent of God on earth.  I would suggest to such doubters certain obvious distinctions; I would remind them of certain simple truths. -Jane Eyre (Preface), Charlotte Bronte

• For the uneasy reader, for the timorous citizen, for all those for whom an "i" can never be too plainly dotted in definition, we repeat as an axiom: "Bohemia is a stage in artistic life; it is the preface to the Academy, the Hôtel Dieu, or the Morgue." -Bohemians of the Latin Quarter, Henry Murger

Sources: Dictionary.com, Online Etymology

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