valu·​able | \ ˈval-yə-bəl How to pronounce valuable (audio) , -yə-wə-bəl, -yü-ə- How to pronounce valuable (audio) \

Definition of valuable

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : having monetary value
b : worth a good price
2a : having desirable or esteemed characteristics or qualities valuable friendships
b : of great use or service valuable advice



Definition of valuable (Entry 2 of 2)

: a usually personal possession (such as jewelry) of relatively great monetary value usually used in plural

Other Words from valuable


valuableness noun
valuably \ ˈval-​yə-​blē How to pronounce valuable (audio) , -​yə-​wə-​blē , -​yü-​ə-​ \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for valuable

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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invaluable = valuable?

Many people find it confusing that the in- prefix at the beginning of invaluable apparently lacks the meaning "not" found in a number of other words, such as invalid, inarticulate, and insane. In fact, the prefix does indicate negation, but in a way that is not immediately obvious. The original (and current) meaning of invaluable is "valuable beyond estimation"; the word describes something so precious that one cannot assign a price to it. This, clearly, is the opposite of the meaning "having no value; valueless" that the word might seem to carry. Invaluable actually has been recorded in the sense "without value," but such use has been exceedingly rare and is practically nonexistent today.

Examples of valuable in a Sentence

Adjective The watch is extremely valuable. A lot of valuable advice can be found in this book. I learned a valuable lesson. He made many valuable contributions to the field of science. The volunteers provide a valuable service to the community. She is a valuable member of the staff. Clean air is a valuable natural resource that needs to be protected. Please don't waste my time. My time is very valuable.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The network isn’t profitable as a stand-alone broadcast entity, but the content produced for it is a valuable asset for other platforms at the parent companies. Joe Flint, WSJ, 6 Jan. 2022 Your current employees are your most valuable asset. Bhushan Parikh, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 Kenny’s been a really valuable asset for this team. Connor Letourneau, San Francisco Chronicle, 5 Jan. 2022 At this point in the NFL season, the most valuable asset for any team that has secured a playoff spot or is battling for one is playing your best football down the stretch. Bob Mcmanaman, The Arizona Republic, 2 Jan. 2022 Dogs are a valuable asset to the ranchers who employ them, but Blackham and others say they’re often not treated as such, and are largely left unprotected by Utah’s animal cruelty laws. The Salt Lake Tribune, 29 Dec. 2021 Brain organoids are also valuable for basic neuroscience research. Anil Seth, Wired, 20 Dec. 2021 Lamboy quickly positioned himself as a valuable logistical asset, an organized thinker with a talent for quiet leadership and the ability to handle money. Christopher Moyer, Rolling Stone, 26 Nov. 2021 Yet the American system for building human capital — our most valuable asset — suffers from the same perverse incentives. Stephanie H. Murray, The Week, 26 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun People carried their valuables, and on most buses, bags and mattresses were loaded., 26 Dec. 2019 The mattress and sock drawer aren’t secure places for your cash and federal documents, because neither will protect your valuables from break-ins, fires, or flooding. Popular Science, 11 Mar. 2020 Protect your valuables with this Pelican case—​a rugged water-, dirt-, and dustproof coffin that holds an oversize smartphone, USB cord, keys, and more. The Editors, Field & Stream, 26 Feb. 2020 Inside, the bag is spacious, and comes with all sorts of traveler bonuses, from ties and clips to secure your valuables to a detachable clear wash bag for all of your toiletries. Louis Cheslaw, Condé Nast Traveler, 21 Feb. 2020 Use a secure money belt or put your valuables in an inside pocket away out of reach. Erica Lamberg, USA TODAY, 20 Jan. 2020 People carried their valuables, and on most buses, bags and mattresses were loaded., 26 Dec. 2019 People carried their valuables, and on most buses, bags and mattresses were loaded. Arkansas Online, 25 Dec. 2019 San Francisco police are on the hunt for a 44-year-old swindler who’s part of a citywide racket in which crooks put fake gold jewelry on victims and use sleight of hand to swipe their valuables, officials said Monday., 23 Dec. 2019

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


circa 1576, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1775, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for valuable


value entry 2 + -able


noun derivative of valuable entry 1

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Time Traveler for valuable

Time Traveler

The first known use of valuable was circa 1576

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Dictionary Entries Near valuable



valuable consideration

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Statistics for valuable

Last Updated

14 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Valuable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for valuable



English Language Learners Definition of valuable

: worth a lot of money
: very useful or helpful
: important and limited in amount


valu·​able | \ ˈval-yə-wə-bəl How to pronounce valuable (audio) , ˈval-yə-bəl \

Kids Definition of valuable

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : worth a lot of money
2 : of great use or service "I must not take any more of your valuable time."— E. B. White, Charlotte's Web



Kids Definition of valuable (Entry 2 of 2)

: a personal possession of great value

More from Merriam-Webster on valuable

Nglish: Translation of valuable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of valuable for Arabic Speakers


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