Today's Word of the Day means...


[puh-lahyt] /pəˈlaɪt/
adjective, politer, politest.
showing good manners toward others, as in behavior, speech, etc.; courteous; civil:
a polite reply.
refined or cultured:
polite society.
of a refined or elegant kind:
polite learning.
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin polītus, past participle of polīre to polish
Related forms
politely, adverb
politeness, noun
superpolite, adjective
superpolitely, adverb
superpoliteness, noun
1. well-bred, gracious. See civil. 2. urbane, polished, poised, courtly, cultivated.
1, 2. rude. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for politely
  • The factory superintendent nodded politely and led them into a large building with peeling gray stucco walls.
  • Within seconds, he's peppering the driver-politely but insistently-with questions.
  • Any and all requests for boxing matches, meanwhile, will be politely declined.
  • They will listen politely and forget the whole matter before they log onto the computer to write their next term papers.
  • People either throw up their hands in horror or shudder politely.
  • He politely turned down my prescription for a bone-strengthening drug, certain it would upset his stomach horribly.
  • He's intelligent, he can only act politely, and he's an excellent means to boost the show's viewer rating.
  • And that doesn't simply mean to politely grow mute while your adversary talks.
  • That's a fair question, and not at all obnoxious if phrased politely.
  • If it's orally requested, politely suggest your reluctance to do so.
British Dictionary definitions for politely


showing regard for others, in manners, speech, behaviour, etc; courteous
cultivated or refined polite society
elegant or polished polite letters
Derived Forms
politely, adverb
politeness, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin polītus polished; see polish
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for politely
1263, from L. politus "refined, elegant," lit. "polished," pp. of polire "to polish, to make smooth." Used literally at first in Eng.; sense of "elegant, cultured" is first recorded 1501, that of "behaving courteously" is 1762.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for polite

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for politely

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with politely