straight·for·ward | \ˌstrāt-ˈfȯr-wərd, ˈstrāt-ˌfȯr-\

Definition of straightforward 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : free from evasiveness or obscurity : exact, candid a straightforward account

b : clear-cut, precise

2 : proceeding in a straight course or manner : direct, undeviating


variants: or less commonly straightforwards \ˌstrāt-ˈfȯr-wərdz \

Definition of straightforward (Entry 2 of 2)

: in a straightforward manner

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Other Words from straightforward


straightforwardly adverb
straightforwardness noun

Examples of straightforward in a Sentence


Using the computer program is fairly straightforward. He was very straightforward with us. She gave a straightforward account of what happened.


she finally told him straightforward that she wasn't interested in a date
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

There are, of course, straightforward commercial reasons why Beyoncé might want her fans to exonerate Jay. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "Do Beyoncé Fans Have to Forgive Jay-Z?," 18 June 2018 What seemed like a straightforward plan quickly got complicated: Morgan’s insurance plan approved the scan at one doctor’s office but denied coverage at another. Sarah Gantz,, "His insurer approved an MRI, then denied it. He forked out $2,340 in cash," 21 Mar. 2018 But while Iran's path to the next round is fairly straightforward, Spain and Portugal are still likely to reach the knockout stage. David Herder,, "World Cup Advancing Scenarios: Group B," 24 June 2018 At most coffee shops, the revenue stream is straightforward: Customers buy drinks. Graham Ambrose,, "Free coffee — with a catch — is coming to Massachusetts," 14 July 2018 The ground rules are fairly straightforward: Three contestants, all of whom must carry some college debt, go head-to-head on a series of trivia questions, including a few related to education. Daniel Arkin /, NBC News, "New game show 'Paid Off' offers chance to eliminate student loan debt," 10 July 2018 The reason for Ollie not (yet) suing is straightforward: Ollie has been contractually required to challenge his firing through internal university appeals and, if that fails, arbitration. Michael Mccann,, "Breaking Down Kevin Ollie's Case Against UConn and the University's Likely Defenses," 29 June 2018 That's partly because annuities can get complicated fast, though their basic feature — an investment that yields payments for many years or even life — is fairly straightforward and has been around for centuries. Russ Wiles, azcentral, "Should you buy an annuity? 4 tips to consider," 24 June 2018 Jack’s approach to the problem has been straightforward. Eamon Barrett, Fortune, "Here's Where the Billionaire Founders of Alibaba and Tencent Bought Homes in Hong Kong," 21 June 2018

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


1790, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1809, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

4 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for straightforward

The first known use of straightforward was in 1790

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More Definitions for straightforward



English Language Learners Definition of straightforward

: easy to do or understand : not complicated

: honest and open


straight·for·ward | \strāt-ˈfȯr-wərd \

Kids Definition of straightforward

: being clear and honest : frank He gave a straightforward reply.

Other Words from straightforward

straightforwardly adverb speak straightforwardly

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Comments on straightforward

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a generally accepted meaning of a word

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