help·​ful | \ ˈhelp-fəl How to pronounce helpful (audio) ; Southern often ˈhep- also ˈheəp- \

Definition of helpful

: of service or assistance : useful a helpful neighbor helpful advice just trying to be helpful

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Other Words from helpful

helpfully \ ˈhelp-​fə-​lē How to pronounce helpful (audio) \ adverb
helpfulness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for helpful



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Examples of helpful in a Sentence

A helpful neighbor shoveled our walkway. a kind and helpful person
Recent Examples on the Web Home sellers providing information to appraisers is within the rules and can be helpful, though appraisers aren’t required to take such information into account, Mr. Miller said. Nicole Friedman, WSJ, 10 Oct. 2021 Sorry to be the bearer of that bad news, but hope the information is helpful nonetheless. oregonlive, 9 Oct. 2021 More coordination between all flood response and readiness groups could be helpful, said Grey Collier, a spokeswoman for the Humphreys County Emergency Management Agency. Washington Post, 8 Oct. 2021 Multiple experts told me this was helpful, and research indicates that people feel less bitterness about housework when their contributions are recognized. Joe Pinsker, The Atlantic, 6 Oct. 2021 Similarly, talking about photos can help people remember details more vividly and is helpful when talking about painful memories (with a little questioning and guidance from your therapist). Melissa Matthews, SELF, 5 Oct. 2021 While sustained exercise is helpful, tiny breaks of physical activity can work as well. Madeleine Burry,, 5 Oct. 2021 If your body is feeling not-so-great, whether from athletic endeavors or simply sitting at your work desk for too long, using a cannabidiol cream is helpful to prevent inflammation. Chelsea Davis, Forbes, 11 Oct. 2021 Obviously, having Natalie Freeman [Garrison Forest transfer] come in was really helpful. Jacob Calvin Meyer,, 16 Sep. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for helpful

see help entry 1

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Time Traveler for helpful

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near helpful

helper T cell



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Statistics for helpful

Last Updated

15 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Helpful.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for helpful



English Language Learners Definition of helpful

: making it easier to do a job, deal with a problem, etc. : giving help
: willing to help other people


help·​ful | \ ˈhelp-fəl How to pronounce helpful (audio) \

Kids Definition of helpful

: providing help a helpful idea

Other Words from helpful

helpfully \ -​fə-​lē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on helpful

Nglish: Translation of helpful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of helpful for Arabic Speakers


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