mean·​ing·​ful | \-fəl \

Definition of meaningful 

1a : having a meaning or purpose The tests did not produce any meaningful results.

b : full of meaning : significant a meaningful life a meaningful relationship

2 : having an assigned function in a language system meaningful propositions

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Other Words from meaningful

meaningfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb
meaningfulness noun

Examples of meaningful in a Sentence

The test did not produce any meaningful results. She looked at him in a meaningful way. He wanted to feel that his job was meaningful. The trip turned out to be very meaningful for both of them.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Some investors fear Citigroup could be particularly exposed if trade disputes led to a meaningful downturn in cross-border activity, or if negotiations over the North American Free Trade Agreement broke down completely. Emily Glazer And, WSJ, "Profit Gains at JPMorgan, Citigroup Reflect a World in Growth Mode," 13 July 2018 Yankeetown’s efforts come in the absence of meaningful state leadership on climate change. Amy Green, miamiherald, "With Gov. Scott and legislature in denial, tiny town adapts on its own to climate change," 11 July 2018 The beauty industry as a whole is just now starting to think about sustainable packaging in a meaningful way. Jessica Cruel, SELF, "You Should Be Recycling Your Beauty Products—10 Things You Need to Know," 7 July 2018 Published this February in JAMA, the study found no differences between the two diets and no meaningful relationship between weight loss and insulin secretion. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "The Collapse of a $40 Million Nutrition Science Crusade," 18 June 2018 In order for effective teaching and learning to take place, teachers must be able to build meaningful relationships with their students. Valerie Strauss, Washington Post, "Ants, termites, outdated or no textbooks: It’s about more than a paycheck for fed-up teachers in North Carolina," 11 May 2018 Earlier studies have concluded older adults tend to have had the time required to forge the meaningful relationships that stave off loneliness. George Mathis, ajc, "Young adults loneliest, study says," 3 May 2018 The podcasts that Kara Swisher and I record, for instance, contribute a meaningful amount of revenue to Recode’s business. Peter Kafka, Recode, "The podcast business is still teeny tiny. Which is great news for podcasts.," 11 June 2018 Rogers first got the idea for the show after seeing all the balloons and Bozos on children’s television and thinking there must be a better and more meaningful way of reaching out to little kids. Peter Rainer, The Christian Science Monitor, "'Mister Rogers' documentary 'Won’t You Be My Neighbor?' is full of sentiment, affection," 8 June 2018

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

1852, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

8 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for meaningful

The first known use of meaningful was in 1852

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More Definitions for meaningful



English Language Learners Definition of meaningful

: having a clear meaning

: expressing an emotion or idea without words

: having real importance or value


mean·​ing·​ful | \ˈmē-niŋ-fəl \

Kids Definition of meaningful

: having a meaning or purpose

Other Words from meaningful

meaningfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

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