since 1997, the world's premier FREE website for learners + teachers of English

silence

This page is about the noun "silence", which can be both countable and uncountable

silence → uncountable

Meaning: total quiet, or no sound at all

Example sentence: The only time I've experienced total silence was when I was alone in the desert.

silence → countable

Meaning: a period of time when nobody's speaking

Example sentence: Whenever there's a long silence, I try to think of something to say.

Quick Quiz:

In which sentence is the word "silence" countable?

a. Long silences can make some people feel uncomfortable.

b. Complete silence can make some people feel uncomfortable.

Contributor: Matt Errey