A person’s temper is a measure of his or her ability to remain calm when experiencing any kind of difficulty. A person who gets mad easily has a bad temper. To have a temper is considered to be a negative personality trait. This word is a noun. (You would never say that a person has a good temper.)

  • Our supervisor has a bad temper. He gets angry at the smallest problems.
  • What a temper!
  • He has to learn to control his temper.
  • Reggie has quite a temper. Be careful around him.
  • Isabel threw a temper tantrum. She lay on the floor of the store and cried until her mother picked her up. (Temper tantrums are common among children but adults have them, too. A temper tantrum is an expression of anger and a loss of self control.)
  • A woman going through the drive-thru at McDonalds had a temper tantrum because she was unable to get an order of chicken McNuggets.
  • People who work at call centers occasionally have to deal with customers who throw temper tantrums over the phone.


The word "temperament" is also a noun. We use this word when talking about a person’s general behavior. In this case, you can say that a person has a good temperament.

  • Everyone feels that Bob has the right temperament to be a good doctor.
  • Janice lacks the temperament that her job requires.
  • Our dog has a good temperament. She behaves well. She’s quiet, and she doesn’t bite.

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July 26, 2016