Definition of shtum in English:

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Pronunciation: /ʃtʊm/
(also schtum) informal


Silent; non-communicative: he kept shtum about the fact that he was sent down for fraud
More example sentences
  • He kept shtum and didn't embarrass her once for the following 11 years and, instead, contented himself with being an almost mute second fiddle to a woman of whom he was inordinately proud.
  • I kept shtum that I had just completed a Politics degree under an America-obsessed Prof.
  • I know you complain about me posting way too much for you to read, so, other than significant breaking news, I will keep shtum until at least Friday afternoon.

verb (shtums, shtumming, shtummed)

[no object]
Be or become quiet and non-communicative: you start to say something and then just when it’s getting interesting you shtum up
More example sentences
  • This source was schtummed when Julia posted a scathing rebuke on the thread, really very angry.
  • The possible risk being that she schtums and won't tell me the truth or just laughs in my face when I bring it up because it's apparently trivial.
  • It's when it gets to the literature type of questions which totally schtums me, I mean I haven't got a clue.


1950s: Yiddish, from German stumm.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: shtum

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