demure vs demur : Common Errors in English

About demure vs demur

A quiet, reserved person is demure. Its second syllable begins with a kittenish “mew”: “de-MYURE.”The verb demur has several meanings, but is now used in a sense derived from law to describe the action of someone who resists acting as requested or answering a question. Its second syllable sounds like the “mur” in “murmur”: “duh-MURR.” Note that it is not spelled with a final E. It is used mainly in legal contexts and in journalism, and is unfamiliar enough to many people that they mix it up with the adjective demure. An example of correct use: “If they ask me to make Danish pastries again, I’m going to demur.” Demurs are usually mild, not loud, vehement refusals.

demure Meaning(s)

  • (s) affectedly modest or shy especially in a playful or provocative way

demur Meaning(s)

  • (n) (law) a formal objection to an opponent's pleadings
  • (v) take exception to
  • (v) enter a demurrer

demure in News

  1. Bill Belichick says Tim Tebow will do whatever is best for the team

    Bill Belichick, in his usual demure tone, deflected question after question about the use of his new quarterback, Tim Tebow, in his first press conference in more than a month and a half.        
    on June 11, 2013 Source: Boston Globe

  2. NSFW Photos: Bicyclists Show Their Butts For World Naked Bike Ride

        The fifth annual World Naked Bike Ride went off without a hitch around the country yesterday, from San Francisco to Grand Ferry Park in Williamsburg. But while the naughty bits were on full display in SF, New Yorkers kept things a bit more demure (after all, anyone can go topless , but no one can be pantsless in public). That doesn't mean there weren't a lot of, er, fully-formed and finely ...
    on June 10, 2013 Source: Gothamist

  3. Ke$ha's Tour Costume Sketches By The Blonds: First Look

    Ke$ha may have sported a somewhat demure look at the Billboard Awards back in May, clad in a black mini-dress by Givenchy. But this glitter-loving...
    on June 7, 2013 Source: Billboard

demur in News

  • Past Tense: July 18, 2013

    Share/Bookmark65 years ago – 1948 Ernie Maxwell, in a demur, bathing suit of the 1890s complete with black stockings, limped into third place in the Businessman’s Committee’s bearded bathing beauty contest. 60 years ago – 1953 The first thundershower of the season left .35 inches of moisture and started four forest fires. 55 years ago [...]
    on July 19, 2013 Source: Idyllwild Town Crier

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