quite

adverb
\ ˈkwīt How to pronounce quite (audio) \

Definition of quite

1 : wholly, completely not quite finished
2 : to an extreme : positively quite sure often used as an intensifier with a quite a swell guyquite a beauty
3 : to a considerable extent : rather quite near
quite a bit
: a considerable amount
quite a few
: many

Keep scrolling for more

Using Plenty as an Adjective: Usage Guide

Many commentators object to use of sense 2 in writing; it appears to be limited chiefly to spoken English. Sense 1 is literary but is no longer in common use.

Examples of quite in a Sentence

He felt that the world he had loved had quite gone. — Edmund Wilson, New York Times Book Review, 20 July 1986 The men who made love to the left-wing college girls were either medical students, who had contempt for them and forgot them, or jocks, who bragged falsely of having made conquests of quite other girls. — Renata Adler, Pitch Dark, 1983 In my opinion, my work … ain't quite good enough … — William Faulkner, in Faulkner in the University, (1959) 1977 Irene Franey, a little older than I, was quite a beauty — John O'Hara, letter, 30 Dec. 1963 “Are you quite finished?” “Not quite.” I am quite capable of doing it myself, thank you. They assured me that I was quite mistaken. We hadn't quite made up our minds. She's quite right, you know. I quite forgot your birthday. No one realized quite what was happening. Quite why he left is unclear. That is not quite what I said.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Nothing marks a milestone like graduation—and kick-starts an adult wardrobe—quite like a major piece of jewelry. Rachel Waldman, Vogue, "Jewelry Is the Greatest Gift You Can Give a Post-Grad," 20 May 2019 And speaking of artistry, no fashion brand has infused creative whimsy into its designs quite like Gucci. Karina Hoshikawa, Allure, "Exclusive: Thomas de Kluyver Talks Relaunch of Gucci Beauty, New Role as Global Makeup Artist," 5 May 2019 But Mosaic’s food isn’t quite like Swanson’s 1950s vintage frozen turkey and mashed potatoes. Laura Forman, WSJ, "Frozen Dinners Are Back, but May Get Iced Out," 3 May 2019 Doors: 1 Maybe camping deep in the backcountry, lugging your gear far away from civilization, isn't quite for you. James Lynch, Popular Mechanics, "This Spring’s 11 Best Camping Tents," 1 May 2019 No one knows heartbreak quite like Varchie stans, who had to endure the couple's breakup earlier this season and watch as both sides of the couple shacked up with new baes. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "8 Signs that Archie and Veronica Are Going to Get Back Together on "Riverdale"," 18 Apr. 2019 Code is quite nice, reminiscent of GNOME's Gedit but without the abandonware feel. Scott Gilbertson, Ars Technica, "A tour of elementary OS, perhaps the Linux world’s best hope for the mainstream," 28 Dec. 2018 There’s quite literally never been a better time to grab Full Throttle in the last twenty-odd years. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "GOG.com's winter sale kicks off with free copies of LucasArts classic Full Throttle," 13 Dec. 2018 Unless political polarization and constitutional hardball somehow abates, rather than worsens, by 2021, the Republican caucus is quite likely to adopt a similar strategy then. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "The Senate is a huge problem for Democrats," 8 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'quite.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of quite

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for quite

Middle English, from quite, adjective, quit

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about quite

Statistics for quite

Last Updated

23 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for quite

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for quite

quite

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of quite

: to a very noticeable degree or extent
used to make a statement more forceful often used with a, an, or the before a noun
: completely or entirely

quite

adverb
\ ˈkwīt How to pronounce quite (audio) \

Kids Definition of quite

1 : beyond question or doubt : completely I was quite alone. Are you quite sure?
2 : to a considerable extent That's quite interesting. We're quite near.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on quite

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with quite

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for quite

Spanish Central: Translation of quite

Nglish: Translation of quite for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of quite for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about quite

Comments on quite

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to speak slightingly about or to degrade

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!