re·​spect·​ful | \ ri-ˈspekt-fəl How to pronounce respectful (audio) \

Definition of respectful

: marked by or showing respect or deference

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Other Words from respectful

respectfully \ ri-​ˈspekt-​fə-​lē How to pronounce respectful (audio) \ adverb
respectfulness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for respectful



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Examples of respectful in a Sentence

the children were remarkably respectful while in the president's office
Recent Examples on the Web Throughout all of this discussion, the assumption has been that whoever owns and is operating that self-driving car will be respectful of the neighborhood and genuinely will try to keep things quiet and unintrusive. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 10 Oct. 2021 At Carmel High School, students who are Greyhound kick-off mentors also made a response TikTok about how to be respectful of school property. Mj Slaby, The Indianapolis Star, 17 Sep. 2021 Visitors are asked to be respectful of those who are praying in the church. Chelsey Lewis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 9 Sep. 2021 Respondents Susan Dunlap, Nathan Winn, and Sahara Hayes all stressed the importance of being friendly and respectful while using public trails. Caroleine James, The Salt Lake Tribune, 23 July 2021 Everything about the royals needs to appear friendly and respectful, with fairy tales about teatime and, to keep things spicy, the occasional classic catfight. Matthew Gilbert,, 8 Mar. 2021 Jalanni had been respectful and was humbled before he was shot and killed by another teenager, allegedly claiming he was owed the cash. Joshua Sharpe, ajc, 27 Sep. 2021 Such differences can and should occur, but the dialogue should be respectful. The Salt Lake Tribune, 27 Sep. 2021 Merwin said that although the biker crowd is largely respectful to law enforcement, officers are preparing for any confrontation that may occur. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 2 Aug. 2021

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

1593, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for respectful

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The first known use of respectful was in 1593

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Last Updated

15 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Respectful.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for respectful



English Language Learners Definition of respectful

: showing or having respect


re·​spect·​ful | \ ri-ˈspekt-fəl How to pronounce respectful (audio) \

Kids Definition of respectful

: showing high regard or courtesy a respectful manner

Other Words from respectful

respectfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb We kept respectfully silent during the ceremony.

More from Merriam-Webster on respectful

Nglish: Translation of respectful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of respectful for Arabic Speakers


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