Terse (adjective) means brief, or using very few words. If your teacher tells you to make your writing in your essay style terse and to the point, he’s saying use as few words as you can and be simple and clear. A terse reply or command may seem rude or unfriendly––but the word terse itself doesn’t mean unfriendly or rude.
Terse is derived from Latin word “tersus” meaning clean and neat.
Dictionary Meanings of Terse:
1. Neatly brief, concise and sparing in the use of words.
2. Curt, abrupt.
Master’s Tip to Learn Terse
Relate terse to turtle. Turtles have short legs. But then they can travel long distances with their short legs. Similarly, when you give a terse response or make a terse statement, you can express much in a few words and be brief and clear.
Sentence Examples for Terse:
1. The minister gave a terse response to questions from the press.
2. While Jane stared at him, he uttered the short, terse command: “Hands up!”
3. “By perpetually thinking about them,” was Newton’s terse and illuminating reply.
4. The definitions are terse and concise and include every term used in electrical science.
5. The boxing match was terse because he knocked the guy out with one punch, so the fight was brief.