skill·​ful | \ˈskil-fəl \

Definition of skillful 

1 : possessed of or displaying skill : expert a skillful chef

2 : accomplished with skill a skillful treatment

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Other Words from skillful

skillfully \ˈskil-​fə-​lē \ adverb
skillfulness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for skillful

proficient, adept, skilled, skillful, expert mean having great knowledge and experience in a trade or profession. proficient implies a thorough competence derived from training and practice. proficient in translating foreign languages adept implies special aptitude as well as proficiency. adept at doing long division skilled stresses mastery of technique. a skilled surgeon skillful implies individual dexterity in execution or performance. skillful drivers expert implies extraordinary proficiency and often connotes knowledge as well as technical skill. expert in the evaluation of wines

Examples of skillful in a Sentence

He is skillful at diplomacy. an artist skillful in the use of color the skillful manner in which the doctor and nurses treated the patient These issues require skillful handling.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Most meteorologists agree that the European model is the most skillful. Jeff Halverson, Washington Post, "Why weather forecasters still struggle to get the big storms right," 6 Apr. 2018 The resort’s grounds, hard hit by Hurricane Maria last year, have seen the skillful reintroduction of more than 300,000 native plants. David Jefferys, Condé Nast Traveler, "Puerto Rico's Dorado Beach Is a Bit of Bali, Three Hours from Home," 12 Nov. 2018 But although the motor battle was gratifyingly free from fatalities and injuries, there were plenty of accidents which might easily, with less skillful handling of cars or less luck, have had a sad ending., "The Great Exposition Road Race," 10 Jan. 2018 What should seem like a clarifying moment of truth, of startling geopolitical insight, feels instead like a screenwriter’s skillful contrivance. Justin Chang,, "Violent, self-admiring sequel 'Sicario: Day of the Soldado' gets lost in the desert," 26 June 2018 These skillful throws helped him win both events at the Murrieta Valley and Mesa dual meets as a senior. Mark Iandolo,, "Where are they now? Gonter, Magnin, Rennick and Rogers," 13 July 2018 The best player in baseball at his physical and skillful best is a sight to behold. Tom Verducci,, "The Star That Still Won't Shine: The Incredible, Unprecedented but Unseen Greatness of Mike Trout," 12 July 2018 Like Spain's team that won everything — two European Championships and one World Cup — in an awesome spell of dominance from 2008 to 2012, the youthful, skillful Bleus could have the makings of a dynasty. John Leicester,, "With World Cup title, France could launch a dynasty," 10 July 2018 The modern job description is of an 11th field player, one who doesn’t have hooves for feet and is skillful enough to start play from the back. Joshua Robinson, WSJ, "France to Hugo Lloris: Get Back in Goal," 13 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for skillful

Last Updated

13 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for skillful

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

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More Definitions for skillful



English Language Learners Definition of skillful

: having the training, knowledge, and experience that is needed to do something well : having a lot of skill

: showing or requiring skill


skill·​ful | \ˈskil-fəl \

Kids Definition of skillful

1 : having or showing ability : expert a skillful gardener

2 : done or made with ability a skillful dive

Other Words from skillful

skillfully \-​fə-​lē \ adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on skillful

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with skillful

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for skillful

Spanish Central: Translation of skillful

Nglish: Translation of skillful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of skillful for Arabic Speakers

Comments on skillful

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having a pattern of small flowers

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