Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

handful

play
noun hand·ful \ˈhan(d)-ˌfu̇l\

Simple Definition of handful

  • : an amount that you can hold in your hand

  • : a small amount or number

  • : someone or something that is difficult to control

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of handful

plural handfuls play \-ˌfu̇lz\ also handsful play \ˈhan(d)z-ˌfu̇l\

  1. 1 :  as much or as many as the hand will grasp

  2. 2 :  a small quantity or number <a handful of people>

  3. 3 :  as much as one can manage <the kids are quite a handful>

Examples of handful in a sentence

  1. The children collected seashells by the handful.

  2. Our dog is a real handful.



Before 12th Century

First Known Use of handful

before 12th century


HANDFUL Defined for Kids

handful

play
noun hand·ful \ˈhand-ˌfu̇l\

Definition of handful for Students

plural handfuls \-ˌfu̇lz\ or handsful \ˈhandz-ˌfu̇l\

  1. 1 :  as much or as many as the hand will grasp

  2. 2 :  a small amount or number <Only a handful of people came.>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up handful? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

marked by propriety and good taste

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

maudlin prompt angry oily
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ