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[wel-mee-ning] /ˈwɛlˈmi nɪŋ/
meaning or intending well; having good intentions:
a well-meaning but tactless person.
Also, well-meant
[wel-ment] /ˈwɛlˈmɛnt/ (Show IPA)
. proceeding from good intentions:
Her well-meaning words were received in silence.
Origin of well-meaning
1350-1400; Middle English Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for well-meaning
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • For the present that is in strict confidence between us; the police are well-meaning, but they sometimes blunder.

    The Agony Column Earl Derr Biggers
  • well-meaning men often do quite as much harm, in this world, as the evil-disposed.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • well-meaning horticulturists have tried what they could do toward domesticating this Malus coronaria.

    Prairie Gold Various
  • My name, translated, means gracious or kindly or well-meaning.

    They Twinkled Like Jewels Philip Jos Farmer
  • One of the worst measures ever proposed by a well-meaning statesman.

British Dictionary definitions for well-meaning


adjective (well meaning when postpositive)
having or indicating good or benevolent intentions, usually with unfortunate results
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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