I assume that in English there is a word for everything, and I am looking for one that roughly means "of few words" or "of no words". The closest I could think of is non-verbal, but it sounds a bit too dry. Is there a better word?

Note: I did check for antonyms of "verbal" before I posted here, but didn't find any.

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  • Could you clarify a little? Do you mean a passage with few words, or a person who uses few words, or ...? The words terse, concise, taciturn, laconic could apply. – Jim Mack Jun 15 '14 at 14:01
  • The asker is looking for "reticent" – statueofmike Dec 5 '17 at 1:54

Consider laconic, taciturn, and synonyms such as pithy and terse:

laconic, “Using as few words as possible; pithy and concise”
taciturn, “Silent; temperamentally untalkative; disinclined to speak”
pithy, “Concise and meaningful.”
terse, “Abruptly or brusquely short” and “(of speech or style) Brief, concise, to the point”
• and per tchrist's comment, pauciloquent, “Using few words when speaking”

  • And pauciloquent. – tchrist Jun 15 '14 at 14:01

speechless - meaning there are no words to describe what you are feeling



Characterized by clear, precise expression in few words; concise and terse: a succinct reply; a succinct style.

(American Heritage Dictionary)

  • 1
    Since you ask, you could link to or include the text of a dictionary definition to support your answer. – Andrew Leach Jun 28 '14 at 7:23
  • We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Please explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. :) – NVZ Jul 25 '17 at 17:01


the quality of expressing much in few words; terseness: Brevity is the soul of wit.


  • Brevity means expressing something with few words. It doesn't describe a person or statement. You wouldn't say "this statement is brevity", you could say "this statement is brief". That still wouldn't be quite right. This question is looking for an adjective not a noun. – Matt E. Эллен Jun 28 '14 at 10:29
  • @MattЭллен "A <b>word</b> that means “of few words” or “without words” & "in English there is a word for everything, and I am looking for one that roughly means "of few words" or "of no words" Please point out where the OP requests "a person or statement" – Third News Jun 28 '14 at 10:59
  • What else would be "of few words"? – Matt E. Эллен Jun 28 '14 at 11:16

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