Definition of conceit in English:

conceit

Line breaks: con|ceit
Pronunciation: /kənˈsiːt
 
/

noun

1 [mass noun] Excessive pride in oneself: he was puffed up with conceit
More example sentences
  • Smugness, conceit, an arrogance which has the appearance of humility… here I can no longer reserve my hatred for these impotent writers.
  • He looked at the miracle of his creation of the Khalsa and attributed it to the Khalsa, without pride or conceit.
  • Indeed, conceit, arrogance, and egotism are the essentials of patriotism.
Synonyms
2An ingenious or fanciful comparison or metaphor: the idea of the wind’s singing is a prime romantic conceit
More example sentences
  • To do so, she explores the idea of metaphoricity, transforming conceits into self-reflexive, self-questioning, and ultimately self-effacing representation.
  • Those are very difficult paths to walk, to be up front about taking that stuff seriously, and not just using it as a trope or a conceit.
  • He is as adept in the conceits of metaphysical poetry as he is in the tones and tunes of seventeenth-century verse; the strings upon which he strums are held taut by centuries.
Synonyms
image, imagery, figurative expression, metaphor, simile, trope, figure of speech; play on words, pun, quip, witticism
2.1An artistic effect or device: the director’s brilliant conceit was to film this tale in black and white
More example sentences
  • Shadow of the Vampire is a fictionalization of a true event, taking off from a brilliant conceit, that the director of a vampire film would hire a real vampire to play the leading role.
  • Whereas Mangan's work is an echo of some pretty familiar sculptural conceits, Painting Machine seems to come from a place that's a little more contemporary.
  • As a result, artists are constructing elaborate conceits to make what they produce fit into the category of a print.
2.2A fanciful notion: he is alarmed by the widespread conceit that he spent most of the 1980s drunk
More example sentences
  • No writer could pen a single word but for the rich humus of public domain effort with which we garden our notions and conceits.
  • Some conceits concerning Scottish education are exactly that, but there has been a long-standing tradition of higher rates of participation at university which dates back to medieval times.
  • ALTHOUGH IT IS an old idea, the conceit that faith can maintain its hold on the imagination only as long as there are blinkers on human vision still has considerable appeal.
Synonyms
idea, notion, fancy
archaic reverie

Origin

late Middle English (in the sense 'notion', also 'quaintly decorative article'): from conceive, on the pattern of pairs such as deceive, deceit.

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