Meaning of dignity in English:


Pronunciation /ˈdɪɡnɪti/

See synonyms for dignity

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mass noun
  • 1The state or quality of being worthy of honour or respect.

    ‘the dignity of labour’
    • ‘It is well understood that honour and dignity are more important than everything.’
    • ‘She has an undefinable quality and she stands for dignity and respect.’
    • ‘This White House came to Office on a platform of restoring honour and dignity to the White House.’
    • ‘This government is selling out the honour and dignity of the country.’
    • ‘Other positions, however, were related more to the quality and dignity of human life.’
    • ‘Their titles, their influence, and their claims to dignity and honour are now precarious.’
    • ‘The devil stripped us of every thing, even the little respect and dignity we had as Aboriginal people.’
    • ‘For one thing, we intuitively respected the inherent dignity of one another.’
    • ‘He ruled until his retirement in 2004 at the age of 38, a reign graced as much by dignity as by destructive potency.’
    • ‘He will be remembered by those who worked with him as a man of integrity, dignity and honesty, and he had many other virtues as well.’
    • ‘Of course, he did have style, if a bit pompous; he gave the ceremony its minimal dignity.’
    • ‘This pumpkin has a great more dignity and gravitas than some goofy pumpkin with a toothy grin and a stupid hat.’
    • ‘Apart from that, she was a picture of dignity and grace, with the kind of beauty that grew resplendent with age.’
    • ‘The solemnity and dignity of the occasion were marred by this imperial affront to the former colonies.’
    • ‘Most Great Danes, the second tallest of all the dog breeds, carried an air of dignity and nobility.’
    • ‘The Khyber Pass itself is a place of rich history, wild majesty and unique cultural dignity.’
    • ‘Sheila said he had been a gentleman, a man of dignity and integrity, who always had a smile on his face and was proud to be from York.’
    • ‘The dignity of the Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Home Department is upheld once more.’
    • ‘But she rises above that, to show that even in misery there can be dignity and nobility.’
    • ‘He exuded dignity and gravity and he was courteous to counsel and witnesses alike.’
    1. 1.1count noun A high rank or position.
      ‘he promised dignities to the nobles in return for his rival's murder’
      • ‘He cultivated an image of Olympian detachment by scrupulously protecting the respective ranks and dignities of the grandees.’
      • ‘Dealing with the item, the Mayor completely forgot the dignities of the office he holds as a neutral guardian of the rights of each citizen in his haste to score a personal rebuff.’
      • ‘This is the sort of person who steps up to the plate when offices and dignities are being passed around.’
      • ‘It angers me that the powers-that-be can suddenly find the money to spend on cleaning up places when dignities come to call.’
      • ‘William had impoverished himself in the service of the Crown whilst Treasurer of Scotland, leaving a debt of more than £80,000 which King James owed to his son John, when he was restored to his dignities in 1592.’
      • ‘As he says, ‘I would not change my life for any of the greatest dignities on earth.’’
      • ‘As for him, he believed the Quakers to be those agents of the devil foretold in the New Testament, who ‘despise dominion and speak evil of dignities.’’
      • ‘The portentous dignities bestowed upon officials and sympathizers were partly for Roman consumption, setting him up as arbiter of status and palace-based master of the city.’
      • ‘Many of the beneficiaries of this system were appointed very young after truncated studies, lightning ordination, and rapid progress through a hierarchy of lesser dignities.’
      • ‘The Anglican world today is seeking to invest the office with dignities and responsibilities that go well beyond its actual place in civil and canon law.’
      • ‘Clergy and laity had to be interdependent, but by the early 19th cent. both groups were asserting their rights and dignities.’
      • ‘I pray for the day when I can return home and take up my dignities again.’
      • ‘Parochial dignities and influence are no substitute for discipleship in the world.’
      • ‘Later he was accused of plotting against Justinian and stripped of his dignities.’
      high rank, high standing, high station, status, elevation, eminence, honour, glory, greatness, importance, prominence, prestige
      View synonyms
  • 2A composed or serious manner or style.

    ‘he bowed with great dignity’
    • ‘Of course people should be able to deal with each other in a manner of dignity and respect.’
    • ‘He handed her the rose with all the dignity that such a serious occasion demanded before getting rather unsteadily to his feet.’
    • ‘Joanna did herself proud, showing that Polish youth can carry themselves with dignity and decorum all over the world.’
    • ‘So, you know, she's handled all of those situations with such dignity and grace.’
    • ‘Most of us are able to deal with life with grace and dignity and when we don't, it worries us and we try to work it out.’
    • ‘I just request that we try to treat this proceeding with some dignity and some decorum.’
    • ‘But now it is gone and we should lament its passing with all the solemnity and dignity such an occasion deserves.’
    • ‘At all times she managed to do all of it with great dignity and integrity.’
    • ‘With grace, dignity and a heartbreaking absence of despair, she pulls the blanket around herself.’
    • ‘They are a tall, noble people who move with grace and dignity, covering the ground, however rough, with apparently effortless ease.’
    • ‘He will have to explain his motives exceptionally well - something he has thus far failed to do - and concede with grace and dignity.’
    • ‘Facing us across the table, his expression solemn, he read the words of the ceremony slowly and with dignity.’
    • ‘You lead a wholesome and healthy life, with dignity and honour.’
    • ‘Patients identified being treated with respect and dignity as very important.’
    • ‘He was always for better relations with Pakistan, and for allowing the people of Kashmir to live with dignity and honour.’
    • ‘However, if their children get in one of these schools they are treated with honour and dignity.’
    • ‘I hope the old fella remembers that he acted with dignity and honour at a time of extreme pressure.’
    • ‘You need to be able to treat both with respect and dignity.’
    • ‘We are committed to treating all persons under coalition control with dignity, respect and humanity.’
    • ‘However, they also noted that the public had praised staff, saying they treated patients with dignity and respect and were polite and caring.’
    stateliness, nobleness, nobility, majesty, regalness, regality, royalness, courtliness, augustness, loftiness, exaltedness, lordliness, impressiveness, grandeur, magnificence
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    1. 2.1A sense of pride in oneself; self-respect.
      ‘it was beneath his dignity to shout’
      • ‘An innate sense of pride and dignity sets them apart from the crowd.’
      • ‘But on the other hand, that is what poverty does to us in the global south; it makes you lose your sense of dignity and pride.’
      • ‘Imagine losing a lifetime of memories, your dignity and your sense of pride.’
      • ‘The higher castes despise manual work and consider it beneath their dignity.’
      • ‘Asked by the castle guard to read his work, the poet refuses because it is beneath his dignity to perform in the open air.’
      • ‘This can only enhance an individual's sense of self-worth and dignity.’
      • ‘Naturally, flying in one of those ancient ships was beneath his dignity.’
      • ‘Once we realize this truth, we are unlikely to contaminate ourselves by behavior beneath our dignity.’
      • ‘Nearly all the women would consider it quite beneath their dignity to go into the kitchen even to supervise it.’
      • ‘It was beneath my dignity to watch him leave, but for some reason I wished I could.’
      • ‘She was missing one shoe, but she seemed to consider it beneath her dignity to limp.’
      • ‘But you have no right simply to dismiss it as irrelevant or beneath your dignity.’
      • ‘Men lose their capacity for self-improvement along with their sense of individual dignity.’
      • ‘They have the right to their own pride and dignity.’
      • ‘In the two-spirited world I have stumbled on, I found that this group maintains a sense of family and a sense of dignity.’
      • ‘Many operations like radical prostatectomies or radical mastectomies rob patients of their dignity and their quality of life.’
      • ‘That deputy violated my civil rights, demeaned my character, and has done serious damage to my dignity.’
      • ‘I paused outside the carved double doors, gathering my dignity and composure around me like a shield.’
      • ‘Do you think the notion that it's beneath the dignity of a serious writer to cater for something like television has simply vanished?’
      • ‘I can ask that the searches and scrutiny be done in a professional manner, with no insults and nothing that offends my dignity.’
      self-esteem, self-worth, self-respect, pride, morale
      View synonyms


    stand on one's dignity
    • Insist on being treated with due respect.

      ‘First, the Lord Advocate stood on his dignity and solemnly intoned that such an idea was an affront to his independence as a law officer charged with the duty of deciding who to prosecute without fear or favour.’
      • ‘We know he stands on his dignity, but do we know what, if any, policy the Labour Party has.’
      • ‘Accuse someone of being a liar and it's almost guaranteed to put the nastiness of any debate up another level and require people to ‘stand on their dignity.’’
      • ‘He replied that he didn't stand on his dignity but that he needed some notice in order to respond to such matters.’
      • ‘Malice, impatience and contempt were unknown to him; he would never take offence or stand on his dignity.’
      • ‘He stood on his dignity and demanded an apology.’
      • ‘‘Wet people,’ she declared, ‘cannot stand on their dignity.’’
      • ‘But the sad truth is that the people who are most desperate to work are the least likely to stand on their dignity.’
      • ‘If these dignitaries are going to stand on their dignity they'll be history.’
      • ‘He stood on his dignity, told me I was a superficial clown and that he wanted no more to do with me.’


Middle English from Old French dignete, from Latin dignitas, from dignus ‘worthy’.