9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[ri-spekt-fuh l] /rɪˈspɛkt fəl/
full of, characterized by, or showing politeness or deference:
a respectful reply.
Origin of respectful
1590-1600; respect + -ful
Related forms
respectfully, adverb
respectfulness, noun
quasi-respectful, adjective
quasi-respectfully, adverb
unrespectful, adjective
unrespectfully, adverb
unrespectfulness, noun
courteous, polite, decorous, civil, deferential.
discourteous, disrespectful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for respectful
  • My parents raised me to be kind and respectful to others.
  • Students know that they need to be respectful and cooperative or they will lose points.
  • Please stay on topic and be respectful of other readers.
  • We remain committed to constant improvement and transparency in the service of sound, respectful science.
  • Or alternatively, smaller males withdraw to a respectful distance and dig tunnels of their own.
  • The resulting changes remain respectful to the design of the original home.
  • Because he is so respectful of everyone, of the little guys, the guys you don't hear about.
  • It seems fairly respectful and is accurate: each has their own extent of teaching and own terms of employment.
  • Our philosophy is that vigorous and respectful adventure travel can help sustain and repair a region.
  • If you design video games for example, you may call yourself a programmer or computer engineer to sound more respectful.
British Dictionary definitions for respectful


full of, showing, or giving respect
Derived Forms
respectfully, adverb
respectfulness, noun
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 respectful

1580s, "characterized by respect" (implied in respectfully), from respect (n.) + -ful. Meaning "full of outward civility" attested from 1680s. Related: Respectfulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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