polite

adjective
po·​lite | \ pə-ˈlīt How to pronounce polite (audio) \
politer; politest

Definition of polite

1a : of, relating to, or having the characteristics of advanced culture
b : marked by refined cultural interests and pursuits especially in arts and belles lettres
2a : showing or characterized by correct social usage
b : marked by an appearance of consideration, tact, deference, or courtesy
c : marked by a lack of roughness or crudities polite literature

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Other Words from polite

politely adverb
politeness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for polite

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 polite in a Sentence

It was polite of him to hold the door for them. Please be polite to the guests. It isn't polite to interrupt people when they're talking. She received some polite applause despite the mistakes in her performance.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Over in the actual D.C. policy world, the proposals are far more polite. Robert Verbruggen, National Review, "Myths of Student-Loan Debt," 11 July 2019 Carli Lloyd responded the next match by following a goal with a polite golf clap. Anne M. Peterson, courant.com, "U.S. women beat Netherlands to repeat as World Cup champions," 7 July 2019 Morgan responded the next match by following a goal with a polite golf clap. Anne M. Peterson, Twin Cities, "United States defeats Netherlands 2-0 for record fourth Women’s World Cup title," 7 July 2019 Carli Lloyd responded the next match by following a goal with a polite golf clap. Anne M. Peterson, The Denver Post, "United States beats the Netherlands 2-0 to win its fourth Women’s World Cup title," 7 July 2019 But as romantic triangles go, this one is startlingly polite: Natasha spends time with Viktor and kisses him, but only after asking Mike’s permission. Justin Chang, chicagotribune.com, "‘Leto’ review: From Russia, a love letter to ’80s rock 'n' roll," 3 July 2019 The kids are all exceedingly polite and don’t complain about having to crowd into the backseat—albeit of Rodriguez’s Mercedes Maybach, which retails starting at $170,750. Ben Reiter, SI.com, "'What's a Scarlet Letter?' The Improbable Reinvention of A-Rod," 25 June 2019 So far, the fight has been fairly polite and policy-oriented, and many activists are excited to see two well-known senators with solid progressive credentials putting forward their ideas and doing well in the polls. Charlotte Alter, Time, "The Other Debate This Week: Progressives Deciding Between Sanders and Warren," 24 June 2019 Because the man was cooperative, polite and honest with officers, the marijuana was confiscated and he was not charged. cleveland.com, "Drunk man, woman cited for variety of charges after being heard arguing outside of car: Lyndhurst police blotter," 4 June 2019

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

circa 1500, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for polite

Middle English (Scots) polit, Latin politus, from past participle of polire

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Dictionary Entries near polite

polit

politarch

politburo

polite

politeful

politeia

Polites

Statistics for polite

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for polite

The first known use of polite was circa 1500

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More Definitions for polite

polite

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of polite

: having or showing good manners or respect for other people
: socially correct or proper

polite

adjective
po·​lite | \ pə-ˈlīt How to pronounce polite (audio) \
politer; politest

Kids Definition of polite

: showing courtesy or good manners

Other Words from polite

politely adverb
politeness noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on polite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for polite

Spanish Central: Translation of polite

Nglish: Translation of polite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of polite for Arabic Speakers

Comments on polite

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