af·​fec·​tion·​ate | \ ə-ˈfek-sh(ə-)nət \

Definition of affectionate

1 : feeling or showing affection or warm regard : loving affectionate friends an affectionate nickname
2 : motivated by affection : tender affectionate care
3 obsolete : inclined, disposed

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Other Words from affectionate

affectionately adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for affectionate


adoring, devoted, fond, loving, tender, tenderhearted



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Examples of affectionate in a Sentence

an affectionate child who gives hugs and kisses freely

Recent Examples on the Web

Seconds later, Vivian ran up to Bündchen, who lifted her up in a very affectionate hug. Maria Pasquini,, "Gisele Bündchen's Daughter Adorably Crashes Vogue Interview to Give Her Mother a Big Hug," 14 June 2018 Those texts were described as unusually familiar and affectionate in tone, but Arce strongly denied having an improper relationship. Christopher Keating,, "Julio Concepcion Sworn in as New State Rep," 12 June 2018 The couple is incredibly affectionate on Instagram, often snuggling up in snapshots captioned with the hashtag #HMF (although the meaning is unclear). Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "How Christina El Moussa Found Love With Boyfriend Ant Anstead Following Her Divorce From Tarek," 12 July 2018 All three would be accurate, if not suitably affectionate., "World Cup Countdown: 13 Weeks to Go - The Meticulous Sir Alf Ramsey, England's Greatest Manager," 23 Mar. 2018 Prince William and Kate Middleton shared an affectionate moment during a visit to Leicester this morning. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton and Prince William Snuck in Some Rare PDA at Their Latest Royal Event," 28 Nov. 2018 Ariana Grande, who is always one for jokes, stepped up her Internet trolling game with an affectionate Instagram photo involving her cousin Courtney Chipolone and a certain reference from Mean Girls. Claire Dodson, Teen Vogue, "Ariana Grande Trolled Fans With a Photo of Her Kissing Her Cousin," 19 Nov. 2018 Maverick and Lisa love one another, and their kids learn what love looks like from their openly affectionate parents. Alissa Wilkinson, Vox, "The Hate U Give is equal parts coming-of-age drama and Black Lives Matter primer. It’s terrific.," 9 Sep. 2018 Their public appearances such as this recent Hamilton theatre trip, the RAF Centenary event with its spicy arm-holding, and the Toronto Invictus Games with some raunchy head-kissing, have all included adorable, affectionate (but never OTT) moments. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Shared an Understated PDA Moment at 'Hamilton'," 30 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'affectionate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of affectionate

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for affectionate

partly borrowed from Medieval Latin affectiōnātus "inclined, disposed, well-disposed," from Latin affectiōn-, affectiō affection + -ātus -ate entry 3; partly formed from affection + -ate entry 3 after Middle French affectionné "having affection for," past participle of affectionner "to have affection for," derivative of affection

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Last Updated

13 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for affectionate

The first known use of affectionate was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for affectionate



English Language Learners Definition of affectionate

: feeling or showing love and affection


af·​fec·​tion·​ate | \ ə-ˈfek-shə-nət \

Kids Definition of affectionate

: feeling or showing a great liking for a person or thing : loving an affectionate friend

Other Words from affectionate

affectionately adverb She patted his head affectionately.

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Comments on affectionate

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


to express emotion in a dramatic way

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