skillful

adjective

skill·​ful ˈskil-fəl How to pronounce skillful (audio)
1
: possessed of or displaying skill : expert
a skillful chef
2
: accomplished with skill
a skillful treatment
skillfully 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.
Recent Examples on the Web Compared to the before photos of the home, which are included in AD’s February 2009 feature, the process was clearly a skillful reimagining, not a dramatic top-to-bottom overhaul. Madeleine Luckel, Architectural Digest, 16 July 2024 But implementing the resulting policies would require a skillful secretary of state supported by a strong State Department. Emma Sky, Foreign Affairs, 16 Oct. 2017 Customers were permitted to bring their own wines (sans corkage fee) and even their own spirits, but our server noted with an amusing and skillful improv of a guest cradling an imaginary bottle, many of them felt weird about it. Amy Drew Thompson, Orlando Sentinel, 4 July 2024 Fighting back will require skillful diplomatic pressure campaigns on every level, from bilateral talks with individual countries to sweeping appeals before the 193-member United Nations. Eric Geller, WIRED, 2 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for skillful 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'skillful.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near skillful

Cite this Entry

“Skillful.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/skillful. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

skillful

adjective
skill·​ful ˈskil-fəl How to pronounce skillful (audio)
1
: having or showing skill
2
: accomplished with skill
a skillful defense
skillfully adverb
skillfulness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on skillful

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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