The Meaning of Modest: What It Is and How To Use It

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What does it mean to describe a person, place, or thing as modest? This article will teach you all about how to use the word modest in a sentence. Then, it will provide you with key information that will further your understanding of our word of the day, such as synonyms, antonyms, and translations! 

What Does Modest Mean?

According to Dictionary, the word modest is an adjective that means humble, decent, or limited. Something that is modest is the opposite of showy or ostentatious. The pronunciation of the word modest is ˈmɒdɪst, and the adverb form of the word modest is modestly.

How Can We Use Modest in a Sentence?

Modest is a common word, and there are several situations where you might hear it in a sentence. Someone could use modest to talk about a place, a thing, or even a person.

Knowing how to use this word of the day in a sentence can help you incorporate it into your vocabulary. Below, you will find examples of the word modest. Study these examples of the word modest, then see if you can write your own example sentences. 

The modest man hated talking about his abilities and preferred to let his work speak for itself.

The women lived within their modest means and always found a way to make ends meet. 

They purchased a modest amount of land to build their small farm. They couldn’t wait to build their barn and fill the land with animals. 

I could only afford a modest apartment in the city, but I was so excited to get out of the suburbs finally!

We were given a modest budget to throw a team-building event at our company. Unfortunately, our employees were annoyed since the party was less than stellar. 

We saw a modest increase in stock prices over the last year but were always worried that the company would fold. 

Ten years ago, you could buy a modest house for a modest price. However, a reasonable price today means you’re living in a shack!

While my income was considered a modest salary in New York, it means I’m rich in Iowa!

The play was a modest success but didn’t break through to a Broadway run. 

The stuffy woman preferred a modest neckline and would alter all her shirts to ensure they didn’t reveal anything.

Once we had saved enough money, we purchased a modest home to start our family. 

What Are Translations of Modest?

Modest is a common word worldwide, not just in American English and British English. If you are traveling or speaking with a person who does not speak English, you can use one of the below translations of modest from Nice Translator.

You might notice that several translations have a similar look and sound to the word modest. When two words in different languages have a similar sound and appearance, they may have the same language of origin or root word. For example, many of the words below that look similar to modest might come from the Latin modestus.

  • Telugu: నమ్రత
  • Slovak: skromný
  • Urdu: معمولی
  • Swedish: blygsam
  • German: bescheiden
  • Basque: linac
  • Italian: modesto
  • Ukrainian: скромний
  • Dutch: bescheiden
  • Arabic: محتشم
  • Kannada: ಸಾಧಾರಣ
  • Portuguese (Portugal): modesto
  • Hebrew: צָנוּעַ
  • Polish: skromny
  • Vietnamese: khiêm tốn
  • Chinese (Taiwan): 謙虛
  • Bulgarian: скромен
  • Amharic: መጠነኛ
  • Portuguese (Brazil): modesto
  • Slovenian: skromno
  • Welsh: gymedrol
  • Thai: เจียมเนื้อเจียมตัว
  • Croatian: skroman
  • Indonesian: sederhana
  • Malayalam: എളിമയുള്ള
  • Danish: beskeden
  • Tamil: சாதாரண
  • Greek: μετριόφρων
  • Bengali: বিনয়ী
  • Latvian: pieticīgs
  • Hungarian: szerény
  • Norwegian: beskjeden
  • Lithuanian: kuklus
  • Gujarati: વિનમ્ર
  • Chinese (PRC): 谦虚
  • Filipino: mababang-loob
  • Serbian: скроман
  • Estonian: tagasihoidlik
  • Russian: скромный
  • Finnish: vaatimaton
  • Icelandic: Hóplaus
  • Catalan: Modest
  • Malay: sederhana
  • Japanese: 控えめ
  • Romanian: modest
  • French: modeste
  • Hindi: मामूली
  • Turkish: mütevazı
  • Czech: skromný
  • Spanish: modesto
  • Korean: 보통의
  • Swahili: wastani
  • Marathi: विनम्र

What Are Synonyms of Modest?

Modest has a fairly positive connotation. However, some related words to modest don’t have the same connotation. 

If you’re looking to describe something as modest but want a neutral or negative connotation, you can use one of the below synonyms of modest from Power Thesaurus. Which of these synonyms of modest would you use in a positive or negative situation?

  • bashful
  • chaste
  • common
  • coy
  • decent
  • decorous
  • demure
  • diffident
  • economical
  • fair
  • humble
  • inconspicuous
  • inexpensive
  • limited
  • low
  • lowly
  • mean
  • meek
  • middling
  • mild
  • minor
  • moderate
  • ordinary
  • plain
  • poor
  • proper
  • prudish
  • pure
  • quiet
  • reasonable
  • reserved
  • restrained
  • reticent
  • retiring
  • scanty
  • seemly
  • self-conscious
  • self-deprecating
  • self-effacing
  • sheepish
  • shy
  • simple
  • slight
  • small
  • small-scale
  • timid
  • timorous
  • unassertive
  • unassuming
  • unexceptional
  • unobtrusive
  • unostentatious
  • unpresuming
  • unpretentious

What Are Antonyms of Modest?

If someone or something is not modest, they might be ostentatious or showy. To learn several words that you might use as an opposite of the word modest, you can reference these Power Thesaurus

Some of these have a positive connotation, while other antonyms of modest are negative. 

  • arrogant
  • assured
  • attention seeker
  • audacious
  • beautiful
  • boastful
  • bold
  • bombastic
  • brash
  • conceited
  • confident
  • disdainful
  • egotistic
  • elaborate
  • exceptional
  • extravagant
  • extreme
  • eye-catching
  • fabulous
  • fantastic
  • filthy
  • fine
  • flamboyant
  • flashy
  • gaudy
  • glorious
  • grand
  • great
  • haughty
  • immodest
  • indecent
  • lofty
  • magnificent
  • ostentatious
  • outrageous
  • overweening
  • pompous
  • presumptuous
  • pretentious
  • proud
  • royal
  • sassy
  • saucy
  • self-important
  • sensational
  • showy
  • slut
  • smug
  • smutty
  • splendid
  • stuck-up
  • supercilious
  • superior
  • terrific
  • unlimited
  • vain
  • vainglorious


The word modest is an adjective that means humble or understated. People can use modest to describe any noun, including people and inanimate objects. The word modest is fairly positive and is often complementary or neutral. Try using the word modest in a sentence today!


Modest Synonyms | Power Thesaurus

Modest Antonyms | Power Thesaurus  

Modest Definition & Meaning | 

Modest | Nice Translator