at·​ten·​tive | \ ə-ˈten-tiv How to pronounce attentive (audio) \

Definition of attentive

1 : mindful, observant attentive to what he is doing
2 : heedful of the comfort of others : solicitous an attentive waitress
3 : offering attentions in or as if in the role of a suitor an attentive boyfriend

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Other Words from attentive

attentively adverb
attentiveness noun

Examples of attentive in a Sentence

The hospital is proud of its attentive staff. Our waiter was very attentive.

Recent Examples on the Web

Service was very attentive in the tiny restaurant, which has about 15 counter seats with linoleum foot counter and half a dozen maroon-colored booths. Marc Bona,, "Steve’s Doghouse: Northeast Ohio’s best weekend brunches, breakfasts," 24 Aug. 2019 Dads actually parent their toddler daughters differently than their toddler son, according to a new study published in Behavioral Neuroscience, and fathers with daughters are more attentive to their daughters than dads with sons. Emma Baty, Redbook, "'Daddy's Little Girl' Isn't Such a Cliché After All," 1 June 2017 Or a Yelp-like app that people could use at playgrounds to snarkily rate parents who may not seem attentive enough with their kids. John C. Havens, Quartz, "Will we lose our rights as parents once robots are better at raising our kids?," 10 July 2019 Bill was a caring man who was dedicated to his family; especially being attentive to his parents' needs., "William J. Madey," 30 July 2019 Yet goats were more attentive to the negative sounds than the positive sounds. Natasha Daly, National Geographic, "Goats can perceive each other’s emotions from their voices," 15 July 2019 Sure, the old Tiger Woods comes out occasionally, seen here across the first two days of the US Open in the form of some long, straight drives and plenty of deep, attentive crowds. Tara Sullivan,, "Will we ever see vintage Tiger Woods again?," 15 June 2018 Adrienne Kaori Walters is dotingly attentive and kind as Emma, but with the nagging sadness of unrequited love. Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News, "Review: Delightful ‘Language Archive’ finds TheatreWorks on a roll," 15 July 2019 That's interesting, in light of controversy (and a pending lawsuit) about whether Autopilot is safe to use when a driver is not fully attentive and able to take the wheel. Eric Stafford, Car and Driver, "Elon Musk Tweets Tacit Approval of Porn Video Shot in Tesla Model X on Autopilot," 10 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'attentive.' 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 attentive

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for attentive

see attend

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Statistics for attentive

Last Updated

19 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for attentive

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

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More Definitions for attentive



English Language Learners Definition of attentive

: thinking about or watching something carefully : paying careful attention to something
: very concerned about the needs of others


at·​ten·​tive | \ ə-ˈten-tiv How to pronounce attentive (audio) \

Kids Definition of attentive

1 : paying attention an attentive listener
2 : very thoughtful about the needs of others Mama was cordial and attentive to everyone, as if entertaining them gave her a purpose.— Pam Muñoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising

Other Words from attentive

attentively adverb listened attentively

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Comments on attentive

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


miscellaneous remnants or debris

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