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[hous-foo l] /ˈhaʊs fʊl/
noun, plural housefuls.
as many as a house will accommodate:
a houseful of weekend guests.
as much as a house will hold:
He had several housefuls of furniture.
Origin of houseful
1250-1300; Middle English. See house, -ful
Usage note
See -ful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for houseful
Contemporary Examples
  • Raising a houseful of kids mostly on her own was enough of a challenge, without throwing ooh-la-la gourmet cooking into the mix.

Historical Examples
  • They look so much nicer than men, George says; he likes a houseful of waving cap-ribbons.

    The Celebrity at Home Violet Hunt
  • In all the Confederacy no houseful went to sleep that night in sweeter content.

    The Cavalier George Washington Cable
  • What a houseful it was, to be sure, and what long, long tables in the dining-room.

  • But how to do this I could not see, having a houseful of people who were nominally my guests.

  • Their hospitality was great: the houseful of women and pretty children seemed all of one mind.

    At Home And Abroad Margaret Fuller Ossoli
  • But each of these is a bid to some friend with a houseful of people to come and bring all her guests.

    Nobody Louis Joseph Vance
  • There's a houseful of her old friends three parts of the time.

    Cleek, the Master Detective Thomas W. Hanshew
  • We hope to have a houseful at Christmas, and I think we may get it up well, chorus and all.

    Gryll Grange Thomas Love Peacock
  • And he an old man of sixty-seven, with a wife and a houseful of children at home.

British Dictionary definitions for houseful


the full amount or number that can be accommodated in a particular house
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for houseful

c.1300, from house (n.) + -ful.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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