• WordNet 3.6
    • n tact consideration in dealing with others and avoiding giving offense
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Tact Sensitive mental touch; peculiar skill or faculty; nice perception or discernment; ready power of appreciating and doing what is required by circumstances. "He had formed plans not inferior in grandeur and boldness to those of Richelieu, and had carried them into effect with a tact and wariness worthy of Mazarin.""A tact which surpassed the tact of her sex as much as the tact of her sex surpassed the tact of ours."
    • Tact The sense of touch; feeling. "Did you suppose that I could not make myself sensible to tact as well as sight?""Now, sight is a very refined tact ."
    • Tact (Mus) The stroke in beating time.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n tact A touching; touch.
    • n tact The sense of touch.
    • n tact Mental perception; especially, fine perception; intuitive sense of what is true, right, or proper; fineness of discernment as to action or conduct, especially a fine sense of how to avoid giving offense; ability to do or say what is best for the intended effect; adroitness; cleverness; address.
    • n tact In music, a beat or pulse; especially, the emphatic down-beat with which a measure begins; hence, also, a measure.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Tact takt adroitness in managing the feelings of persons dealt with: nice perception in seeing and doing exactly what is best in the circumstances:
    • n Tact takt (mus.) the stroke in keeping time
    • ***


  • Francois De La Rochefoucauld
    “If it requires great tact to speak to the purpose, it requires no less to know when to be silent.”
  • George E. Bergman
    George E. Bergman
    “Tact is the art of making guests feel at home when that's really where you wish they were.”
  • Samuel Butler
    “It is tact that is golden, not silence.”
  • Samuel Butler
    “Silence is not always tact, but it is tact that is golden, not silence.”
  • Jean Cocteau
    “Tact is knowing how far to go too far.”
  • Jean Cocteau
    “Tact in audacity consists in knowing how far we may go too far.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. tactus, a touching, touch, fr. tangere, tactum, to touch: cf. F. tact,. See Tangent
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. tactustangĕre, tactum, to touch.


In literature:

We met with tact and courtesy from the mercenary.
"Adventures of a Despatch Rider" by W. H. L. Watson
He made himself known to the liberal leaders, and with great tact exhibited his abilities.
"Paris: With Pen and Pencil" by David W. Bartlett
They are sure to meet, or Mrs. Nicholson will bring them together in her tactful way.
"The Disentanglers" by Andrew Lang
We will take first the Hesitant Tactful, where the typist is not merely considered as a human being but invited to become an ally.
"Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 152, February 14, 1917" by Various
Judgment and tact are necessary to good conversation.
"Talks on Talking" by Grenville Kleiser
It is an art and tact, rather than an instinct and inspiration.
"Our Deportment" by John H. Young
On the face of it the British commander's position called for very great tact.
"Sir John French" by Cecil Chisholm
Prompt action, and ready tact, are the weapons by which to meet it, and subdue it.
"Dream Life" by Donald G. Mitchell
She was a woman of exquisite tact.
"The Helpmate" by May Sinclair
Bucareli relied on his gifts of tact and diplomacy, of which he gave no small evidence during the negotiations which ensued.
"South America" by W. H. Koebel

In poetry:

We thank you that in morning-dawn
Your woman's tact and aid were drawn
Our boisterous youthful art to guide!
"Mrs. Louise Brun" by Bjornstjerne Bjornson
She's not a miracle of tact:
Her temper's not the best I know:
She's got her little faults in fact,
Although I never tell her so.
"After the Golden Wedding (Three Soliloquies)" by James Kenneth Stephen
Our senses run in deepening grooves,
Thrown out of which they lose their tact,
And consciousness with effort moves
From habit past to present fact.
"Fact Or Fancy?" by James Russell Lowell
What oppressed me so much
Was a bit shameful.
Talking of it aloud
Would show neither tact nor prudence.
It might even seem an outrage
Against the health of mankind.
"A Poem For the End of the Century" by Czeslaw Milosz
But no sooner, the fact is, you bind, as your tact is,
Your head with the vows of untruth,
Than you shine out more charming, and, what's more alarming,
You come forth beloved of our youth.
"To Barine" by Roswell Martin Field
Horatio was a decent guy,
And when she ravished from her heart
A damsite better man than I,
She seemed to me,—well, just a tart:
Her lack of tact I can't explain.
His picture,—is it hung again?
"Horatio" by Robert W Service

In news:

Supreme Court keeps broadcast Indecency Rules in tact .
I've been chosen to ride along with the UHP's TACT (Ticketing Aggressive Cars & Trucks) enforcement unit.
Tact in the age of Wikileaks.
Obama Needs a Tact Increase.
MMM > News > Takeda sees new Rozerem tact pay off.
Sears unveils 'brand' new marketing tact .
Timeless Tact Helps Sustain A Literary Time Traveler.
Tactful strategies lessen annoyance of TV in waiting rooms.
How PR People Can Tactfully Locate, Pitch Influential Bloggers.
How to tactfully deal with a pregnant bridesmaid .
That's an understandable tact to take.
As the Nittany Lions reel from the firing of university president Graham Spanier and longtime football coach Joe Paterno, the sports network employs tact during coverage of Saturday's match against Nebraska.
More than twice as many votes to keep force in tact.
Tact in the age of Wikileaks.
OK, start ripping the sucker apart-but do it with tact.

In science:

We would expect all these features to occur in the corresponding boundary-driven version of the DDRD, in cases (like injection/ejection of dimers) so long as the injection and ejection processes keep the IS in tact.
Directed diffusion of reconstituting dimers
In the early experiments [8, 9] the groups observed a sharp peak in the t -dependence of the cross section in nuclei when the nucleus remained in tact (events without stubs).
Coherent Pion Production by Neutrinos
This has been a great conference, packed with important science and arranged with style, tact, thoughtful consideration for the participants, and deep scientific insight.
Summary Talk: International Symposium on Neutrino Astrophysics, Takayama/Kamioka (10/'92)
The student asked that all of the speakers for that day raise their hands and then went to each speaker to tactfully inquire if they had remembered to bring their viewgraphs. I am sure I speak for all of us who attended the conference in expressing our gratitude to J.
Summary Talk: International Symposium on Neutrino Astrophysics, Takayama/Kamioka (10/'92)
In other words, the RVB background is still, for the most part, in tact.
Conductivity of Doped Two-Leg Ladders