courteous

adjective
cour·​te·​ous | \ ˈkər-tē-əs How to pronounce courteous (audio) , British also ˈkȯ-\

Definition of courteous

1 : marked by polished manners, gallantry, or ceremonial usage of a court
2 : marked by respect for and consideration of others

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Other Words from courteous

courteously adverb
courteousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for courteous

civil, polite, courteous, gallant, chivalrous mean observant of the forms required by good breeding. civil often suggests little more than the avoidance of overt rudeness. owed the questioner a civil reply polite commonly implies polish of speech and manners and sometimes suggests an absence of cordiality. if you can't be pleasant, at least be polite courteous implies more actively considerate or dignified politeness. clerks who were unfailingly courteous to customers gallant and chivalrous imply courteous attentiveness especially to women. gallant suggests spirited and dashing behavior and ornate expressions of courtesy. a gallant suitor of the old school chivalrous suggests high-minded and self-sacrificing behavior. a chivalrous display of duty

Examples of courteous in a Sentence

There was no doubt that his stubbornly held and trenchantly expressed views—his trenchancy always tempered, however, by his gently courteous manner—contributed significantly to his unpopularity … — Simon Winchester, The Man Who Loved China, 2008 … she has seen generations of boys come and go, some well groomed and courteous, others rough and uppity … — Julian Barnes, New Yorker, 5 Mar. 1990 He joined us in the Yellow Room with … his son, a thoughtful, courteous, nice doctor … — Lady Bird Johnson 27 May 1964, in A White House Diary1970 The clerks were helpful and courteous. their customer service department always gives courteous responses, even to rude people
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Recent Examples on the Web

Unlike Scalia, Stevens was invariably courteous, even in defeat. Jeffrey Toobin, The New Yorker, "The Humane Legacy of John Paul Stevens," 17 July 2019 Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, the independent-minded jurist whose bright bow ties and courteous manner symbolized an old-fashioned style of integrity, died Tuesday after suffering a stroke a day earlier. Los Angeles Times, "John Paul Stevens, retired Supreme Court justice, dead at 99," 16 July 2019 Law enforcement operations are sensitive, any interaction with the public by ICE is done in a professional and courteous manner to ensure both the safety of the officer and the community. San Diego Union-Tribune, "This volunteer patrol warns immigrants if ICE is in their neighborhoods," 6 July 2019 The Oregon Department of Agriculture, Marion County Farm Bureau and Marion County Sheriffs are reminding drivers to slow down, use extreme caution, be courteous and pack your patience to help keep everyone safe on rural roads. oregonlive.com, "Portland metro Wednesday traffic: Summer harvest means more agricultural vehicles on the road; use caution," 19 June 2019 Dwight Adams/IndyStar Be courteous and patient behind the wheel this weekend, Hoosiers, and prepare for several construction projects to cause traffic on major highways in the Indianapolis area. Andrew Clark, Indianapolis Star, "Indianapolis traffic: Construction could slow major highways this weekend," 7 June 2019 Although courteous, graceful, and charming, there was little warmth; the migrainous person was cold, aloof, detached. Katherine Foxhall, Time, "How A Nurse With a Hole in Her Skull Changed The Medical History of Migraines," 18 June 2019 The tone of the questioning was initially courteous. Sheelah Kolhatkar, The New Yorker, "Can Elizabeth Warren Win It All?," 14 June 2019 Ocean Prime, a restaurant near Ellroy’s apartment, has numerous steak options and elaborately courteous waiters. The Economist, "James Ellroy finally has happiness in his sights," 8 June 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for courteous

Middle English corteis, from Anglo-French curteis, from curt

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Statistics for courteous

Last Updated

20 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for courteous

The first known use of courteous was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for courteous

courteous

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of courteous

: very polite in a way that shows respect

courteous

adjective
cour·​te·​ous | \ ˈkər-tē-əs How to pronounce courteous (audio) \

Kids Definition of courteous

: showing respect and consideration for others : polite

Other Words from courteous

courteously adverb

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Comments on courteous

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