- 1[uncountable] a complete lack of noise or sound synonym quiet Their footsteps echoed in the silence. A scream broke the silence of the night. I need absolute silence when I'm working.
- 2 [countable, uncountable] a situation when no one is speaking an embarrassed/awkward silence a moment's stunned silence I got used to his long silences. They finished their meal in total silence. She lapsed into silence again. There was a deafening silence (= one that is very noticeable). a two-minute silence in honor of those who had died Her accusations reduced him to silence. He's not one to suffer in silence (= to suffer without telling someone)!
- 3[uncountable, singular] a situation in which someone refuses to talk about something or to answer questions She broke her public silence in a TV interview. silence (on something) The company's silence on the subject has been taken as an admission of guilt. the right to silence (= the legal right not to say anything when you are arrested) There is a conspiracy of silence about what is happening (= everyone has agreed not to discuss it).
- 4[uncountable] a situation in which people do not communicate with each other by letter or telephone The phone call came after months of silence. Idioms
nounjump to other results
an occasion when nobody speaks, although people are aware that there are feelings or thoughts to express There was a pregnant pause before she replied.
a pregnant pause/silencejump to other results
it is often best not to say anything
silence is golden (saying)jump to other results