Definition of temporize in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtɛmpərʌɪz/
(also temporise)


[no object]
Avoid making a decision or committing oneself in order to gain time: the opportunity was missed because the queen still temporized
More example sentences
  • The council had temporized on quite crucial decisions.
  • Moderate leaders continue to temporize and avoid coming to grips with extremists.
  • Liberals are classified as weak, insipid, temporizing, and unprincipled.
equivocate, procrastinate, play for time, play a waiting game, stall, use delaying tactics, avoid committing oneself, avoid making a decision, delay, hang back, beat about the bush, be evasive, prevaricate, be indecisive, hesitate;
British  hum and haw
archaic palter
rare tergiversate, use Fabian tactics



Pronunciation: /tɛmpərʌɪˈzeɪʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • It is a temporisation: a device for avoiding to commit oneself.
  • He steered the US back toward the path of temporisation and appeasement.
  • Nothing has been more deleterious in this war than the promise of hard force followed by temporization.


Pronunciation: /ˈtɛmpərʌɪzə/
Example sentences
  • He is a temporizer who has stood up for tyrants.
  • He came to see himself as a temporizer.


Late 16th century: from French temporiser 'bide one's time', from medieval Latin temporizare 'to delay', from Latin tempus, tempor- 'time'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: tem¦por|ize

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