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 respectfully
  • Because water is a precious resource, using it respectfully in the garden is a tradition.
  • Then he sits respectfully at her side while she embroiders a piece of lace.
  • Contestants tended to eye the barrier respectfully: the punishment for false starts was a thrashing from official whip bearers.
  • We respectfully refer all inquiries into a pending criminal matter to the investigating agency.
  • respectfully sir, you call for creative solutions yet reject them before proper consideration.
  • Others respectfully kept their distance from the center yet also refused in the crisis to budge from their places.
  • The lawyer respectfully declined to let his client speak to them.
  • He was respectfully listened to, and got a fair amount of laughs, cheers and applause.
  • The company now treats him much more respectfully and his site has gained a large following.
  • His ideas have generally been respectfully received by those in the field.
British Dictionary definitions for respectfully


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 respectfully



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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