so·​lic·​i·​tous sə-ˈli-sə-təs How to pronounce solicitous (audio)
: manifesting or expressing solicitude
a solicitous inquiry about his health
: full of concern or fears : apprehensive
solicitous about the future
: meticulously careful
solicitous in matters of dress
: full of desire : eager
solicitously adverb
solicitousness noun

Did you know?

If you're solicitous about learning the connections between words, you'll surely want to know about the relationship between solicitous and another word you've probably heard before—solicit. Solicitous doesn't come from solicit, but the two words are related. They both have their roots in the Latin word sollicitus, meaning "anxious." Solicitous itself came directly from this Latin word, whereas solicit made its way to English with a few more steps. From sollicitus came the Latin verb sollicitare, meaning "to disturb, agitate, move, or entreat." Forms of this verb were borrowed into Anglo-French, and then Middle English, and have survived in Modern English as solicit.

Examples of solicitous in a Sentence

I appreciated his solicitous inquiry about my health. He had always been solicitous for the welfare of his family.
Recent Examples on the Web Matty Placencia’s coolly charismatic John is prickly and standoffish at times, solicitous at others. Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News, 19 Mar. 2024 König is a creep for the ages, and Stevens has a lip-smacking good time being solicitous but casually skeevy with Gretchen while showing an inordinate interest in Alma. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 16 Feb. 2024 Helpful and friendly without being overly solicitous, folks who work at The Harper are genuine and kind. Kim Westerman, Forbes, 29 Feb. 2024 Victor Talmadge is cloyingly solicitous as a local banker (and seemingly also pastor) offering dubious financial assistance and trying to woo Bobbie back to the local church. Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News, 22 Feb. 2024 And in medieval and early modern Europe, when impure blood was believed to unbalance the humors of the body and cause disease, the creatures were seen as solicitous helpers, ever ready to relieve a patient of their unwelcome plasma. Zoey Poll, New York Times, 16 Feb. 2024 Whatever his imperious reputation, Ramsay is chummy and solicitous in conversation. Calum Marsh, New York Times, 27 Jan. 2024 Jacob suddenly reappears and shoots the stranger dead, but Beth and Helena manage to escape and make their way to a police station, where they’re taken care of by a solicitous officer, Clark (Gil Birmingham, Yellowstone). Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, 2 Nov. 2023 But seals are interested, curious, sometimes even solicitous. Jennifer Berney, Outside Online, 7 Apr. 2023

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

Word History


Latin sollicitus

First Known Use

1563, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of solicitous was in 1563


Dictionary Entries Near solicitous

Cite this Entry

“Solicitous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


so·​lic·​i·​tous sə-ˈlis-ət-əs How to pronounce solicitous (audio)
: full of concern or fears : apprehensive
: very careful
: anxiously willing : eager
solicitously adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on solicitous

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