- pleasing; agreeable; delightful: a nice visit.
- amiably pleasant; kind: They are always nice to strangers.
- characterized by, showing, or requiring great accuracy, precision, skill, tact, care, or delicacy: nice workmanship; a nice shot; a nice handling of a crisis.
- showing or indicating very small differences; minutely accurate, as instruments: a job that requires nice measurements.
- minute, fine, or subtle: a nice distinction.
- having or showing delicate, accurate perception: a nice sense of color.
- refined in manners, language, etc.: Nice people wouldn't do such things.
- virtuous; respectable; decorous: a nice girl.
- suitable or proper: That was not a nice remark.
- carefully neat in dress, habits, etc.
- (especially of food) dainty or delicate.
- having fastidious, finicky, or fussy tastes: They're much too nice in their dining habits to enjoy an outdoor barbecue.
- Obsolete. coy, shy, or reluctant.
- Obsolete. unimportant; trivial.
- Obsolete. wanton.
- make nice, to behave in a friendly, ingratiating, or conciliatory manner.
- nice and, sufficiently: It's nice and warm in here.
Origin of nice
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for niceness
His body has an even grace, his face a restless eagerness, and a gentleness, not to be confused with ‘niceness,’ is his manner.The Stacks: Grateful Dead I Have Known
August 30, 2014
Even people from the “nicest” parts of the country try to downplay that “niceness.”Cleveland Comes Crawling Back to LeBron: The Masochism of Rust Belt Chic
July 15, 2014
No amount of American niceness and understanding will change that.Obama's Forgettable New Strategy
Leslie H. Gelb
May 27, 2010
But niceness is only one answer, and it only works for young men who are willing and able to change.Rehab the Terrorists...With Love
May 21, 2009
Each new group gets a subterranean ovation for being a part of this wonderful thing, for being a part of this New York niceness.Subway Euphoria
November 5, 2008
If not what her niceness makes her think blameworthy, why does she blame herself?Clarissa, Volume 3 (of 9)
An' her havin' to grow up a young lady with nothin' but niceness in her!Terry
Safety is more to be respected than show or niceness for ease.How Britannia Came to Rule the Waves
"I should be sorry to have her niceness all come out in looks," said Betty's mother.A Little Girl in Old Boston
Amanda Millie Douglas
She had never quite got over the lack of 'niceness' about those ploughs.The Freelands
- pleasant or commendablea nice day
- kind or friendlya nice gesture of help
- good or satisfactorythey made a nice job of it
- subtle, delicate, or discriminatinga nice point in the argument
- precise; skilfula nice fit
- rare fastidious; respectablehe was not too nice about his methods
- foolish or ignorant
- shy; modest
- nice and pleasinglyit's nice and cool
- a city in SE France, on the Mediterranean: a leading resort of the French Riviera; founded by Phocaeans from Marseille in about the 3rd century bc . Pop: 342 738 (1999)
- (in Britain) National Institute for Clinical Excellence: a body established in 1999 to provide authoritative guidance on current best practice in medicine and to promote high-quality cost-effective medical treatment in the NHS
Word Origin and History for niceness
late 13c., "foolish, stupid, senseless," from Old French nice (12c.) "careless, clumsy; weak; poor, needy; simple, stupid, silly, foolish," from Latin nescius "ignorant, unaware," literally "not-knowing," from ne- "not" (see un-) + stem of scire "to know" (see science). "The sense development has been extraordinary, even for an adj." [Weekley] -- from "timid" (pre-1300); to "fussy, fastidious" (late 14c.); to "dainty, delicate" (c.1400); to "precise, careful" (1500s, preserved in such terms as a nice distinction and nice and early); to "agreeable, delightful" (1769); to "kind, thoughtful" (1830).
"In many examples from the 16th and 17th centuries it is difficult to say in what particular sense the writer intended it to be taken." [OED]
By 1926, it was pronounced "too great a favorite with the ladies, who have charmed out of it all its individuality and converted it into a mere diffuser of vague and mild agreeableness." [Fowler]
"I am sure," cried Catherine, "I did not mean to say anything wrong; but it is a nice book, and why should I not call it so?"
"Very true," said Henry, "and this is a very nice day, and we are taking a very nice walk; and you are two very nice young ladies. Oh! It is a very nice word indeed! It does for everything." [Jane Austen, "Northanger Abbey," 1803]