well-meaning

adjective
well-mean·​ing | \ ˈwel-ˈmē-niŋ How to pronounce well-meaning (audio) \

Definition of well-meaning

1 : having good intentions well-meaning but misguided idealists
2 : based on good intentions well-meaning advice

First Known Use of well-meaning

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Learn More About well-meaning

Time Traveler for well-meaning

Time Traveler

The first known use of well-meaning was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near well-meaning

well-meaner

well-meaning

well-meant

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for well-meaning

Cite this Entry

“Well-meaning.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/well-meaning. Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on well-meaning

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for well-meaning

Nglish: Translation of well-meaning for Spanish Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!