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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web

For many large brands, such as top luxury labels, the show can be quite literally a marketing expense incurred to sell more fragrances, accessories, and leather goods such as handbags. Marc Bain, Quartzy, "Do fashion weeks still have a purpose?," 7 Sep. 2019 For instance, quite a lot of time is spent learning about the anti-Derg resistance movement, which like all oppositional bodies has its own problems with infighting and debates over violent or nonviolent resistance. Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Sweetness in the Belly': Film Review | TIFF 2019," 6 Sep. 2019 From the hair, to the makeup, to the outfits, to the accessories, to the shoes, nobody does it quite like us and these fabulous photos are living proof. Rachaell Davis, Essence, "The Street Style At ESSENCE Fashion House NYC Was On Fire," 5 Sep. 2019 There's nothing quite like learning on the job with immense pressure. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Rising Cool Girl Shoe Brand Is One to Watch," 4 Sep. 2019 Elizabeth Scott didn’t know what hit her — quite literally. Michelle R. Martinelli, For The Win, "Meet Louisville's Elizabeth Scott, the dancer who suffered a broken nose on national TV," 3 Sep. 2019 In fact, the institution contained a number of features that Americans quite liked. Eliga Gould, The Conversation, "The American Founders made sure the president could never suspend Congress," 3 Sep. 2019 Porter could play quite a bit for the Canton Charge in the D-League. Terry Pluto, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Cavaliers: The impact of Larry Nance Jr. and breaking down the roster," 1 Sep. 2019 There was quite a bit of blood spatter on Clarkson's dress and 18 tiny drops of blood on Spector's jacket. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Physicists now have even better models for blood spatter from gunshot wounds," 29 Aug. 2019

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.

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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

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Statistics for quite

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for quite

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

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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.

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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

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