Definition of manner in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈmanə/


1A way in which a thing is done or happens: taking notes in an unobtrusive manner
More example sentences
  • They brighten the streets and fasten the scenery together in the unobtrusive manner of true cultural icons.
  • Fortunately, individual lions can be dependably identified in an unobtrusive manner.
  • In a gruesome act of fate, the star famed for that role met her untimely death in a similar manner, but by accident, on December 8, 1971.
way, fashion, mode, means, method, system, style, approach, technique, procedure, process, methodology, modus operandi, form, routine, practice
1.1A style in literature or art: a dramatic poem in the manner of Goethe
More example sentences
  • Bollinger was ‘working’ in these pictures, but not in the manner of the other artists Fiore depicted.
  • It is largely devoted to an account of the battle of Actium, but tells it all in the manner of Callimachus, a style wholly unsuited to the subject-matter.
  • These new works are a bold push forward, and they show the artist entering into the world of storytelling in the manner of a heartsick troubadour.
1.2 [mass noun] Grammar A semantic category of adverbs and adverbials which answer the question ‘how?’: an adverb of manner
More example sentences
  • There are adverbs of manner, adverbs of place, adverbs of frequency, adverbs of time and adverbs of purpose.
  • Some writers put an adverb of manner at the beginning of the sentence to catch our attention and make us curious.
  • Should the linguistic category of ‘manner’ be restricted to semantico-grammatical phenomena?
1.3 (manner of) archaic A kind or sort: what manner of man is he?
2A person’s outward bearing or way of behaving towards others: his arrogance and pompous manner
More example sentences
  • Undoubtedly his manner towards Shackleton must have appeared quite subservient.
  • His characteristic manner soon brought customers from near and far and his perfectness in hair styling was always much admired.
  • She probably had a pretty face to start with, but her manner and grace was quite a study in femininity.
demeanour, air, aspect, attitude, appearance, look, bearing, cast, deportment, behaviour, conduct;
comportment, mien
3 (manners) Polite or well-bred social behaviour: didn’t your mother teach you any manners?
More example sentences
  • The researchers claim that ‘politeness, manners and etiquette’ are now the pinnacle of chic.
  • She picked up the same one as him, and began to eat, trying as hard as she could to be polite and use the manners that her mother had taught her.
  • Politeness and manners were important but etiquette was not a top priority.
rudeness, discourtesy, discourteousness, impoliteness, incivility, unmannerliness, boorishness, uncouthness, vulgarity, ungentlemanly behaviour, unladylike behaviour, lack of social grace, lack of refinement
customs, habits, ways, practices, conventions, usages
correct behaviour, etiquette, social graces, good form, protocol, politeness, decorum, propriety, gentility, civility, formalities, niceties, Ps and Qs, breeding;
French politesse
informal the done thing
archaic convenances
3.1Social behaviour or habits: Trevor apologized for his son’s bad manners
More example sentences
  • I am going to make extra effort to use good manners and proper social behavior.
  • I promise to practice good manners and good behaviour and not to lead a life of idleness.
  • To be aggressive in behaviour, arrogant in manners and harsh in language is a manifestation of savagery.
social behaviour, behaviour, conduct, way of behaving, form, social habit



all manner of

Many different kinds of: echinacea is used by American Indians for all manner of ailments
More example sentences
  • The simple answer is to fill in the blanks with all manner of really important things to do.
  • Our society claims to be caring - yet unrestrained selfishness leads to all manner of evil.
  • As always in such cases, all manner of conspiracy theories immediately sprang up.

by no manner of means

see means.

in a manner of speaking

In some sense; so to speak: he’s not here, so in a manner of speaking I’m in charge
More example sentences
  • Researchers believe that by putting microcomputers into every manmade object in the world, computers could, in a manner of speaking, sense the real world.
  • It is, in a manner of speaking, sort of a test for pundits.
  • Before the start of the tournament the Asian Football Confederation promised ‘star quality’ and it has delivered - in a manner of speaking.

(as if) to the manner born

Naturally at ease in a specified job or situation: General Marshall managed in mufti to wear the three-piece suit as if to the classy manner born
With allusion to Shakespeare's Hamlet i. iv. 17
More example sentences
  • She breezes through Previn's challenging music as if to the manner born, combining a crystal clear upper register with a wealth of darker, more sensuous colours.
  • Highly respected for her mastery of the French repertoire, she launched into Wagner as if to the manner born, diction and dynamics perfect and every note impeccably placed.
  • Although Ashish bowled as if to the manner born, for Diwan Singh, his son's journey from a local school ground to superstardom in Durban seems surreal.



hordes of mannerless middle-class brats
More example sentences
  • But in the business life there are many mannerless and unpolite people.
  • There was no personnel to control those mannerless people.
  • The first thing you have to remember is we are blind, not mannerless.


Middle English: from Old French maniere, based on Latin manuarius 'of the hand', from manus 'hand'.

  • Latin manus ‘hand’ is ultimately the source of manner, as it is of manage and many other words, via the idea of ‘way of handling’. The first sense in English was ‘sort, kind’, followed by ‘usual practice or behaviour’, then ‘customary rules of behaviour in society’, and (in the plural) ‘polite or well-bred social behaviour’—the kind of manners that parents try to teach their children. The phrase as if to the manner born, ‘naturally at ease in a particular job or situation’, derives from a passage in Shakespeare's Hamlet. Since at least the mid 19th century this has also appeared as ‘to the manor born’, a confusion picked up in the title of the British television series To the Manor Born, first shown in 1979. See also mansion

Words that rhyme with manner

Alana, Anna, bandanna, banner, Branagh, canna, canner, Diana, fanner, Fermanagh, Guyana, Hannah, Havana, hosanna, Indiana, Joanna, lanner, Louisiana, manna, manor, Montana, nana, planner, Pollyanna, Rosanna, savannah, scanner, spanner, Susanna, tanner

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: man¦ner

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