kind·​ness | \ˈkīn(d)-nəs \

Definition of kindness 

1 : the quality or state of being kind treating people with kindness and respect

2 : a kind deed : favor They did me a great kindness.

3 archaic : affection

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Examples of kindness in a Sentence

We thanked her for her many kindnesses. You would be doing me a great kindness if you agreed to help.

Recent Examples on the Web

If words have the power to harm or heal, Gomez's latest look was a master move in controlling the conversation—and a valuable reminder that there's nothing more beautiful than human respect and kindness. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "Selena Gomez Claps Back at Haters with an Unmistakable Message at New York Fashion Week," 12 Sep. 2018 The family wishes to express their gratitude to Gladeview Health Care and Rehabilitation of Old Saybrook, CT, especially to the nurses and staff on the third floor for their compassion, respect and kindness to Carol and her family., "Carol Lepore," 3 July 2018 Having moved so frequently as a child, Louise made friends easily and always treated others with respect and kindness., "Deaths in Central Florida: 6/27," 27 June 2018 In those meetings, teachers and students discuss how to treat others with respect and kindness. Denise Coffey, Courant Community, "Ashford, Eastford Students Delighted With "Nugget And Fang" Production," 12 June 2018 Here what counted was your kindness, your compassion, and your willingness to embrace mystery. Sara Eckel, Longreads, "The Hole in My Soul," 1 June 2018 He's described by guidance director Evy Lenoff as a phenomenal student who daily demonstrates the character traits of respect and kindness. Beth Feinstein-bartl,, "Kids of Character 2018 awards handed out to Broward students," 8 May 2018 My first draft leads with the need for kindness and respect. New York Times, "Diary of a New York Co-op Board President," 27 Apr. 2018 Barbara Bush’s devotion to literacy also dotted each speech - her national literacy foundation has raised more than $110 million since its start - as did her kindness to many friends and acquaintances. Jacob Carpenter And Emily Foxhall, San Antonio Express-News, "Thousands honor nation’s first mother as she is laid to rest," 21 Apr. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for kindness

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for kindness

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

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English Language Learners Definition of kindness

: the quality or state of being kind

: a kind act


kind·​ness | \ˈkīnd-nəs \

Kids Definition of kindness

1 : the quality or state of being gentle and considerate She helped them out of kindness.

2 : a kind deed : favor You'd be doing me a great kindness by staying.

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Comments on kindness

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


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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