Definition of brevity in English:



  • 1[mass noun] Concise and exact use of words in writing or speech.

    ‘the staff will edit manuscripts with a view to brevity and clarity’
    ‘for brevity, it is worth using these little symbols’
    • ‘I'd say that is because it is a model of brevity and clarity.’
    • ‘Men talk about facts and want clarity and brevity.’
    • ‘There were other items in the agreement that have been omitted for brevity.’
    • ‘None of this is compromised for the sake of brevity.’
    • ‘The 900-page books aside, we applaud brevity, speed and quick thinking.’
    • ‘The need for brevity made Lincoln pack a great deal into few words.’
    • ‘We have condensed the ideas into our own words, for the sake of brevity and clarity.’
    • ‘A customer who responds positively to a cleverly worded e-mail may prefer brevity and clarity in voice mail messages.’
    • ‘The initial sections are tight little vignettes whose brevity lends them a narrative crispness.’
    • ‘Strengths of the book are its brevity, the lively, incisive writing, and the authors' willingness to take a stand.’
    • ‘And the first lesson all journalists should learn is that brevity - clear, tight writing - is key.’
    • ‘Jin does not endow his protagonist with high powers of lyricism, brevity or a particularly happy ending.’
    • ‘In the interests, I imagine, of brevity, those last two words have been omitted in later editions.’
    • ‘This election campaign, which thanks to its brevity has been heated from the start, is not going to the strategists' plans.’
    • ‘He explains, Americans are conditioned to equate visual brevity with success and power.’
    • ‘This brevity and intensity of focus leads to a succinct cinematic statement.’
    • ‘Imagine the exclamatory brevity that space travel writing might bring.’
    • ‘It benefits from its clear writing style, its many examples, and its brevity.’
    • ‘By its brevity, that one word expands to fill the scene, and remains as an indelible memory.’
    • ‘He searched for the right words to relay this information with brevity.’
    • ‘In spite of its brevity, it is the most comprehensive summary listing that I have seen in print.’
    conciseness, concision, succinctness, economy of language, compendiousness, shortness, briefness, pithiness, pith, incisiveness, crispness, compactness, compression
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    1. 1.1Shortness of time.
      ‘the brevity of human life’
      • ‘In spite of its brevity, it still remains a fine specimen of how a group of fragmentary ideas can be moulded into a unified whole.’
      • ‘The movie's brevity (it's only two hours long) thus comes as a relief.’
      • ‘In the interest of brevity, we decided to reduce the initial item pool.’
      • ‘If there was one thing that disappointed me it was the apparent brevity of the show.’
      • ‘Its refreshing brevity of ten minutes made it a convenient apéritif for the concerto to follow.’
      • ‘The brevity of the short film format, sadly, undermines the good intentions of the filmmakers.’
      • ‘The brevity of the counseling intervention may have been insufficient to affect change.’
      • ‘In the interest of brevity (here as well as in my initial post) I use these terms loosely.’
      • ‘Its only saving grace was its brevity - 78 minutes that crawled by like the Hundred Years' War.’
      • ‘This is a haunting and powerful piece, all the more effective for its relative brevity.’
      • ‘The one factor in the movie's favor is its brevity - only 81 minutes, including credits.’
      • ‘Conversely, the shorter numbers are often stifling in their brevity.’
      • ‘Considered as a whole, the seams do show cuts were made in the interests of brevity.’
      • ‘Its brevity and limited depth really hurts, rather than helps it.’
      • ‘So, in the interest of brevity, here's a quick rundown of what sucked.’
      • ‘Indeed, the only thing particularly remarkable about the story is it relative brevity.’
      • ‘He did so with an ability, clarity and, given the mass of material, brevity for which we both thank and commend him.’
      • ‘But in the interest of brevity I now leave this short summary as it is.’
      • ‘The number and brevity of the scenes also present problems.’
      • ‘We're not showing the output for reasons of brevity, but you could try it on your own.’
      shortness, briefness, transience, transitoriness, ephemerality, impermanence
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Late 15th century: from Old French brievete, from Latin brevitas, from brevis brief.