faith·​ful | \ ˈfāth-fəl How to pronounce faithful (audio) \

Definition of faithful

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : steadfast in affection or allegiance : loyal a faithful friend
2 : firm in adherence to promises or in observance of duty : conscientious a faithful employee
3 : given with strong assurance : binding a faithful promise
4 : true to the facts, to a standard, or to an original a faithful copy
5 obsolete : full of faith



Definition of faithful (Entry 2 of 2)

1  plural in construction

a : church members in full communion and good standing used with the
b : the body of believers in Islam used with the
2 plural faithful or faithfuls : one who is faithful especially : a loyal follower, member, or fan party faithfuls

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Other Words from faithful


faithfully \ ˈfāth-​fə-​lē How to pronounce faithfully (audio) \ adverb
faithfulness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for faithful


faithful, loyal, constant, staunch, steadfast, resolute mean firm in adherence to whatever one owes allegiance. faithful implies unswerving adherence to a person or thing or to the oath or promise by which a tie was contracted. faithful to her promise loyal implies a firm resistance to any temptation to desert or betray. remained loyal to the czar constant stresses continuing firmness of emotional attachment without necessarily implying strict obedience to promises or vows. constant friends staunch suggests fortitude and resolution in adherence and imperviousness to influences that would weaken it. a staunch defender of free speech steadfast implies a steady and unwavering course in love, allegiance, or conviction. steadfast in their support resolute implies firm determination to adhere to a cause or purpose. a resolute ally


faithful, loyal, and true mean firm in devotion to something. faithful is used of someone who has a firm and constant devotion to something to which he or she is united by or as if by a promise or pledge. Always be faithful to your duty. loyal is used of someone who firmly refuses to desert or betray someone or something. Most volunteers are loyal to their country. true is used of a person who is personally devoted to someone or something. She was a true friend who would help in time of need.

Examples of faithful in a Sentence


She has provided the company with many years of faithful service. He insists that he has always been faithful to his wife.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

And on Friday night, 21 candidates mingled among thousands at Rep. Clyburn’s annual fish fry for the Democratic faithful. Tyrone Beason,, "2020 candidates show unity in South Carolina, wooing black voters and easing up on Biden," 23 June 2019 During their first winning homestand of the season, which ended in a 5-3 loss to the Brewers on Sunday, the Giants reminded the faithful and perhaps even themselves how energizing success on the field can be. Henry Schulman,, "Giants fail to complete sweep of Brewers in finale of winning homestand," 16 June 2019 About two hours into the ceremony, Gudziak addressed the faithful for the first time as Metropolitan Archbishop. Kristin E. Holmes,, "New metropolitan archbishop of Ukrainian Catholic Church faces challenge of renewal among U.S. faithful," 4 June 2019 The Tribune was flooded with letters mocking the controversy and defending the billboard as a faithful, nonexploitative representation of women’s gymnastics, and in retrospect, perhaps Hill didn’t quite understand the billboard’s power. Dvorameyers, Longreads, "The Gymnast’s Position," 5 June 2019 But among the West Ham faithful, he will always be remembered as a club icon - most famous for his penalty heroics against Everton in the FA Cup third round in 2015., "Lanzini Interest, Adrian's Emotional Farewell & Rice Eyeing England Glory: West Ham News Roundup," 5 June 2019 June 4, 1989, was a seminal day for China’s faithful, as the Chinese government massacred thousands of pro-democracy demonstrators in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square. Nina Shea And Bob Fu, WSJ, "Inside China’s War on Christians," 30 May 2019 With her faithful and feisty friend-slash-manager (Alex Borstein, also an Emmy winner) by her side, little by little Midge begins to turn comedy clubs in her favor. D. Elizabeth, Glamour, "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel Is Back With a New Full-Length Season 2 Trailer," 24 Oct. 2018 More and more, con artists — some who might not be Muslim — are fleecing the faithful. Frank Witsil, Detroit Free Press, "Charity during Ramadan means public safety, religion at odds," 14 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The court was cleared, and Mississippi State tossed a futile inbounds pass into the lane as the buzzer sounded, starting a wild celebration among the Irish faithful who were part of the sellout crowd in Columbus, Ohio. Samuel Chamberlain, Fox News, "Notre Dame buzzer-beater stuns Mississippi State in NCAA women's title game," 1 Apr. 2018 The Oranje faithful can often be seen all dressed in eye catching, luminous orange, whereas some opt to dress in unusual costumes., "7 of the Most Passionate Fans in World Cup History," 26 June 2018 Of course, the brand has since gone on to make more modern iterations, which appear to be the reason why UD is killing off its old faithfuls. Zoe Weiner, Glamour, "Whoa: Urban Decay Is Discontinuing Its Iconic Naked Palette," 23 Aug. 2018 Although this latest research is not definitive, generations of the faithful will continue to be fascinated by the Shroud of Turin. Christopher Carbone, Fox News, "Bloodstains on Shroud of Turin are probably fake, experts say," 16 July 2018 An actual tryst requires people to be physically present in the same place, but foreplay can happen anytime, anywhere – and the faithful may have no idea. Kim Komando, Fox News, "8 clever ways that tech can reveal a cheating spouse," 15 Sep. 2018 To the teams’ faithful, this matchup is a litmus test. Rachel Bachman, WSJ, "The Return of the College Football Matchup Fans Love to Hate," 30 Aug. 2018 More than 1 million faithfuls attending his final mass during a six-day visit to Latin America. Kainaz Amaria, Vox, "2018, explained in pictures by women and non-binary photographers," 21 Dec. 2018 Addressing a conference of his ruling party faithful in the capital, Recep Tayyip Erdogan added fuel to the spat with the U.S., even as local business groups called on his government to settle it. Suzan Fraser, The Seattle Times, "Turkey’s Erdogan vows US boycott, but diplomats resume talks," 14 Aug. 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for faithful


Middle English feithful, from feith faith entry 1 + -ful -ful entry 1


derivative of faithful entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near faithful


faith cure



faith healing



Statistics for faithful

Last Updated

26 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for faithful

The first known use of faithful was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for faithful



English Language Learners Definition of faithful

: having or showing true and constant support or loyalty
: deserving trust : keeping your promises or doing what you are supposed to do
: not having sex with someone who is not your wife, husband, girlfriend, or boyfriend


faith·​ful | \ ˈfāth-fəl How to pronounce faithful (audio) \

Kids Definition of faithful

1 : firm in devotion or support a faithful friend
2 : reliable a faithful worker
3 : true to the facts : accurate The model was a faithful copy of my grandfather's car.

Other Words from faithful

faithfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb
faithfulness noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on faithful

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for faithful

Spanish Central: Translation of faithful

Nglish: Translation of faithful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of faithful for Arabic Speakers

Comments on faithful

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


having a desire to acquire more things

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