re·spect·able | \ ri-ˈspek-tə-bəl \

Definition of respectable 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : worthy of respect : estimable

2 : decent or correct in character or behavior : proper

3a : fair in size or quantity a respectable amount

b : moderately good : tolerable

4 : fit to be seen : presentable respectable clothes



Definition of respectable (Entry 2 of 2)

: a respectable person

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Other words from respectable


respectability \ri-ˌspek-tə-ˈbi-lə-tē \ noun
respectableness \ri-ˈspek-tə-bəl-nəs \ noun
respectably \ri-ˈspek-tə-blē \ adverb

Examples of respectable in a Sentence


She comes from a very respectable family. no respectable dietician would advise people to eat just one kind of food

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Take, for example, a pair of drivers who each posted respectable finishes in Sunday’s race. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "IndyCar racing with its new aero kits is 'awesome,' or perhaps 'bland'," 9 July 2018 Not even the team's general manager, Al Avila, knows if a respectable offer will land in his lap before the July 31 trading deadline. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers bet on Michael Fulmer can pay off in ace or prospects," 9 July 2018 And the wine list includes such respectable, easy-on-the-wallet bottles as a Joel Gott 815 Cabernet. Tim Smith,, "Stanford Kitchen a welcome addition to Owings Mills dining scene," 5 July 2018 Loomer gives respectable PayPal journalists a bad name. Stephen A. Crockett Jr., The Root, "Hack ‘Journalist’ Files Assault Charges Against Maxine Waters," 27 June 2018 Fisher has raised a respectable $31,000 this year, according to campaign finance records. Jason Williams,, "PX column: What's Mayor John Cranley's next step in politics? See which office it won't be," 22 June 2018 The average round-trip ticket is a respectable $171, the lowest Independence Day airfare in five years, the AAA data show. Cassie Shortsleeve, Condé Nast Traveler, "4th of July Travel Weekend to Be the Busiest on the Road, Ever," 21 June 2018 Yet even here the club has struggled to balance between being cool enough to draw customers and respectable enough to keep the inspectors at bay. Chris Buckley And Adam Wu, New York Times, "First Rule of Chinese Fight Club: No Karaoke," 8 Feb. 2018 The final two months of the season represent a good test for a young club with designs on a respectable finish. Dennis Lin,, "Padres mailbag: Why wasn't Jhoulys Chacin traded?," 3 Aug. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Shaken respectables thought the Paris Commune had crossed the Atlantic. Sean Wilentz, New York Times, "When Corruption and Venality Were the Lifeblood of America," 19 Sep. 2017

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


1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1814, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for respectable

The first known use of respectable was in 1599

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English Language Learners Definition of respectable

: considered to be good, correct, or acceptable : decent or correct in character, behavior, or appearance

: fairly good


re·spect·able | \ ri-ˈspek-tə-bəl \

Kids Definition of respectable

1 : decent or correct in conduct : proper They're respectable people.

2 : fit to be seen : presentable Wear something respectable.

3 : deserving high regard She acted in a respectable manner.

4 : fair in size or quantity We collected a respectable amount.

Other words from respectable

respectably \-blē \ adverb

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Comments on respectable

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


the setting in which something occurs

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