adjective \ˈwäch-fəl, ˈwch-\

: always watching the actions of someone or something : paying careful attention to someone or something

Full Definition of WATCHFUL

a :  not able or accustomed to sleep or rest :  wakeful
b :  causing sleeplessness
c :  spent in wakefulness :  sleepless
:  carefully observant or attentive :  being on the watch
watch·ful·ly \-fə-lē\ adverb
watch·ful·ness noun

Examples of WATCHFUL

  1. We need to be more watchful of our children.
  2. The hotel is being built under the watchful eye of its architect.

First Known Use of WATCHFUL

15th century

Synonym Discussion of WATCHFUL

watchful, vigilant, wide-awake, alert mean being on the lookout especially for danger or opportunity. watchful is the least explicit term <the watchful eye of the department supervisor>. vigilant suggests intense, unremitting, wary watchfulness <eternally vigilant in the safeguarding of democracy>. wide-awake applies to watchfulness for opportunities and developments more often than dangers <wide-awake companies latched onto the new technology>. alert stresses readiness or promptness in meeting danger or in seizing opportunity <alert traders anticipated the stock market's slide>.


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