1 of 2


nicer; nicest
: polite, kind
a very nice person
That's nice of you to say.
: pleasing, agreeable
a nice time
a nice person
: appropriate, fitting
not a nice word for a formal occasion
She always wears nice clothes.
: well-executed
nice shot
: socially acceptable : well-bred
from a nice family
: virtuous, respectable
… I met nice girls whose skirts reached the ground.Jack London
: possessing, marked by, or demanding great or excessive precision (see precision entry 1 sense 2a) and delicacy
nice measurements
a nice distinction between these two words
: showing fastidious or finicky tastes : particular
too nice a palate to enjoy junk food
: exacting in requirements or standards : punctilious
a nice code of honor
obsolete : trivial
nicely adverb
niceness noun


2 of 2


: in a nice or pleasing way
They plan to fix up the place real nice.
He still had his bald spots, but the fur that he did have cleaned up nice.Kate DiCamillo
In fact, the action is part of what made the findings redundant. The action mattered because it has, for the past two years, forced Microsoft to play nice. [=to behave nicely; to be cooperative and unaggressive in dealing with others]Gary Rivlin
Bipartisanship may also be elusive if it means a hostile GOP majority has to play nice with a President it has tried to kick out of office.Amy Borrus et al.
Choose the Right Synonym for nice

correct, accurate, exact, precise, nice, right mean conforming to fact, standard, or truth.

correct usually implies freedom from fault or error.

correct answers
socially correct dress

accurate implies fidelity to fact or truth attained by exercise of care.

an accurate description

exact stresses a very strict agreement with fact, standard, or truth.

exact measurements

precise adds to exact an emphasis on sharpness of definition or delimitation.

precise calibration

nice stresses great precision and delicacy of adjustment or discrimination.

makes nice distinctions

right is close to correct but has a stronger positive emphasis on conformity to fact or truth rather than mere absence of error or fault.

the right thing to do

Example Sentences

Adjective I hope you all had a nice time. It's so nice to see you again. It's nice to be back home. It's nice to know that you're all right. It would be nice to try something different. We had a very nice dinner. “Hello, my name is Sara.” “It's nice to meet you, Sara.” It's nice to see you, Luis. How have you been? She wears the nicest clothes. He looks nice in his new suit. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
But a nice, simple start for a quarterback who simply took what was there and played his role. Nick Baumgardner, Detroit Free Press, 30 Oct. 2017 And there’s a nice jumping off point here in the numbers that were presented to the general assembly in Manhattan this week, and that The MMQB obtained. Albert Breer,, 19 Oct. 2017 In southern Ohio, the triple nickel-Route 555-is a nice, long, windy road. Grant Segall,, 19 Oct. 2017 The cod taco was unexpectedly and deliciously spicy with a nice, lingering after-burn. Alaska Dispatch News, 18 Oct. 2017 And Landon executes some nice, albeit arbitrary stylistic flourishes that draw attention to the filmmaking process. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, 25 Oct. 2017 Our teacher is a nice, relaxed guy who tells the class to get onstage for a warm-up exercise and asks us to name our favorite movie. Katie Sharer, Los Angeles Magazine, 20 Oct. 2017 Must be nice to go through life as a billionaire dreamer. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, 2 Nov. 2017 Crushing your own spices is nice, but we like a finer consistency too. Alex Delany, Bon Appetit, 31 Oct. 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'nice.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History



Middle English, foolish, wanton, from Anglo-French, silly, simple, from Latin nescius ignorant, from nescire not to know — more at nescience

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 7a


circa 1544, in the meaning defined above

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

Dictionary Entries Near nice

Cite this Entry

“Nice.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


: finicky in tastes or habits
: not obvious : subtle
a nice distinction
: pleasing, agreeable
a nice time
a nice person
: well behaved : respectable
wasn't a nice thing to do
: done very well
nice job!
nicely adverb
niceness noun

Geographical Definition


geographical name

variants or ancient Nicaea
city and port on the Mediterranean Sea in southeastern France population 343,304

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