silence

(redirected from silences)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Idioms.
Related to silences: quietness

silence

noun absolute quiet, hush, lack of sound, noiselessness, quiescence, quiescency, quiet, quietness, quietude, silentium, soundlessness, speechlessness, suppression of sound, taciturnitas, wordlessness
Associated concepts: estopped by silence, silence as an admission
Foreign phrases: Qui tacet, consentire videtur.He who is silent is deemed to consent. Qui tacet consentire videtur, ubi tractatur de ejus commodo. He who is silent is deemed to consent, when his interest is at stake.
See also: allay, concealment, lull, peace, placate, repress, stifle, stop, strangle, subdue, suppress

SILENCE. The state of a person who does not speak, or of one who refrains from speaking.
     2. Pure and simple silence cannot be considered as a consent to a contract, except in cases when the silent person is bound in good faith to explain himself, in which case, silence gives consent. 6 Toull. liv. 3, t. 3, n. 32, note; 14 Serg. & Rawle, 393; 2 Supp. to Ves. jr. 442; 1 Dane's Ab. c. 1, art. 4, Sec. 3; 8 T. R. 483; 6 Penn. St. R. 336; 1 Greenl. Ev. 201; 2 Bouv. Inst. n. 1313. But no assent will be inferred from a man's silence, unless, 1st. He knows his rights and knows what he is doing and, 2d. His silence is voluntary.
     3. When any person is accused of a crime, or charged with any fact, and he does not deny it, in general, the presumption is very strong that the charge is correct. 7 C. & P. 832 5 C. & P. 332; Joy on Conf. s. 10, p. 77.
     4. The rule does not extend to the silence of a prisoner, when on his examination before a magistrate he is charged by another prisoner with having joined him in the commission of an offence: 3 Stark. C. 33.
     5. When an oath is administered to a witness, instead of expressly promising to keep it, he gives his assent by his silence, and kissing the book.
     6. The person to be affected by the silence must be one not disqualified to act as non compos, an infant, or the like, for even the express promise of such a person would not bind him to the performance of any contract.
     7. The rule of the civil law is that silence is not an acknowledgment or denial in every case, qui tacet, non utique fatetur: sed tamen verum est, eum non negaro. Dig. 50, 17, 142.

References in classic literature ?
And in the middle of a deathlike silence, Charles, calm, lofty, and with his head still covered, sat down again in his arm-chair.
I had to wait some time, though during that silence she gave no sign of distress or agitation.
Wade said anything, her statement was apt to settle the matter, for on those subjects which she discussed at all, she was an authority, and on those which she was not, her training in Martin's household had taught her to maintain a wise silence.
Indeed, owing to his long silence, his presence in the room was almost forgotten.
The traveller applied himself to his steak in silence.
When he had gone, and he left her without breaking his silence more than was needed to wish her good night, she sat on for a time, reviewing what he had said.
You will never hear the tom-tom again," he muttered, but inaudibly of course, for strict silence had been enjoined
Heaven knows, unless it is that the persistent clicking of that unfathomable enigma out there in the vast silences of the Sahara has so wrought upon my nerves that reason refuses longer to function sanely.
We wandered gaily over the hill, calling to each other with laughter and jest, getting parted and delightfully lost in that little pathless wilderness, and finding each other unexpectedly in nooks and dips and sunny silences, where the wind purred and gentled and went softly.
We made that small house ring with boisterous mirth and resound with the murmur of much sober talk, making amends then to Walden vale for the long silences.
One of those silences struck the group which are more strange and insufferable than any speech.
Not a word more was said on the subject, and the boys were again silent--one of those blessed, short silences in which the resolves which colour a life are so often taken.