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temporize (verb) gain time by delaying a decision or giving an answer.

To temporize is to gain time by delaying making a decision or giving a definite answer to a question. Putting off decision or giving a definite answer just to gain time is to temporize.

  • Anne was angry with Henry, as he was not giving a definite answer to her question. She later realized that he was only temporizing. He was delaying the answer just to gain time.
  • The officer told Henry firmly to give his decision by that evening. Henry then realized that he could not temporize any longer. He could not gain any more time beyond that evening, as he had to give his decision that evening.
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Last Modified : 11-May 2009
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