peace·​ful ˈpēs-fəl How to pronounce peaceful (audio)
: peaceable sense 1
They are a peaceful people.
: untroubled by conflict, agitation, or commotion : quiet, tranquil
the feeling … that we as neighbors could settle any disputes in peaceful fashionF. D. Roosevelt
: of or relating to a state or time of peace
… the feasibility of creating a peaceful world order.Alan Tonelson
: devoid of violence or force
The opposing groups used peaceful tactics.
peacefully adverb
peacefulness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for peaceful

calm, tranquil, serene, placid, peaceful mean quiet and free from disturbance.

calm often implies a contrast with a foregoing or nearby state of agitation or violence.

the protests ended, and the streets were calm again

tranquil suggests a very deep quietude or composure.

the tranquil beauty of a formal garden

serene stresses an unclouded and lofty tranquility.

watched the sunset of a serene summer's evening

placid suggests an undisturbed appearance and often implies a degree of complacency.

remained placid despite the criticism

peaceful implies a state of repose in contrast with or following strife or turmoil.

grown peaceful in old age

Example Sentences

The park is so peaceful and quiet. They settled the conflict by peaceful means. We need to find a peaceful alternative to war.
Recent Examples on the Web Monochrome dream sequences by Wenders’ wife Donata — drawing on the Japanese concept of komerebi, or the play of light in trees — allude to Hirayama’s equally peaceful but poetically-inclined inner life. Guy Lodge, Variety, 25 May 2023 The only luxury adults-only resort in Hawaii, Hotel Wailea is a peaceful oasis with 72 suites set on 15 acres of lush property in Maui. Leena Kim, Town & Country, 25 May 2023 The film’s opening image, focusing on some crabs making their way out of the bloodied neck of a headless corpse, might be the most peaceful of the entire picture. Bilge Ebiri, Vulture, 23 May 2023 Ecuadoran gangs, many working with Mexican cartels, have unleashed a wave of violent crime in the country’s streets and prisons, wreaking havoc never before seen in the historically peaceful country. Diana Durán, Washington Post, 17 May 2023 These versatile, useful ships served both in carrier battle groups and alone, showing the flag in relatively peaceful parts of the world, interdicting the flow of drugs into the United States, and performing other low-risk missions that didn’t call for the firepower of a destroyer. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 16 May 2023 However, with March’s restoration of diplomatic ties between Saudi Arabia and Iran, brokered by China, Arab states believe there is an opening to positively engage Damascus and transform what was a proxy war with Tehran into a peaceful competition for influence in Syria. Taylor Luck, The Christian Science Monitor, 16 May 2023 The 208-acre Henderson Beach State Park, with its 6,000 feet of natural coastline, sits adjacent to the hotel and is a peaceful stretch of beach to enjoy during your visit. Skye Sherman, Travel + Leisure, 14 May 2023 Your peaceful place is on the Oregon coast a week before the accident, before the drive to Bend. Anne Lagamayo, Longreads, 11 May 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'peaceful.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of peaceful was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near peaceful

Cite this Entry

“Peaceful.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


peace·​ful ˈpēs-fəl How to pronounce peaceful (audio)
: enjoying peace and quiet
a peaceful people
: quiet entry 2 sense 1c, tranquil
a peaceful countryside
especially : not at war
: not involving violence or force
settled the conflict by peaceful means
peacefully adverb
peacefulness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on peaceful

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