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90s Slang You Should Know


[kom-pluh-men-tuh-ree, -tree] /ˌkɒm pləˈmɛn tə ri, -tri/
of the nature of, conveying, or expressing a compliment, often one that is politely flattering:
a complimentary remark.
given free as a gift or courtesy:
a complimentary ticket.
noun, plural complimentaries.
something given or supplied without charge, as lodging, transportation, or meals, especially as an inducement to prospective customers.
Origin of complimentary
First recorded in 1620-30; compliment + -ary
Related forms
complimentarily, adverb
complimentariness, noun
intercomplimentary, adjective
quasi-complimentary, adjective
uncomplimentary, adjective
1. commendatory, praising, laudatory.
1. abusive, unflattering. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for complimentary
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • At that moment we came into the presence, and he became unflinchingly grave and complimentary with his late captor.

    Lord Jim Joseph Conrad
  • She is not complimentary; but as I do not know her, it makes no difference.

    Princess Zara Ross Beeckman
  • Letters have passed; complimentary and sympathetic gentlemen have interviewed me and tried to weaken my decision.

    Simon the Jester William J. Locke
  • On the other hand, many a homely name has a complimentary meaning.

    The Romance of Names Ernest Weekley
  • He then becomes an "old soldier;" a term which, for some reason or other, is used in civil life with no complimentary import.

British Dictionary definitions for complimentary


/ˌkɒmplɪˈmɛntərɪ; -trɪ/
conveying, containing, or resembling a compliment
expressing praise; flattering
given free, esp as a courtesy or for publicity purposes
Derived Forms
complimentarily, adverb
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 complimentary

1620s, "conveying a compliment," from compliment (n.) + -ary. In later use loosely meaning "free of charge."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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