- characterized by or giving attention; observant: an attentive audience.
- thoughtful of others; considerate; polite; courteous: an attentive host.
Origin of attentive
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- excessively careful to fulfil the needs and wants (of)
- paying attention; listening carefully; observant
- (postpositive often foll by to) careful to fulfil the needs or wants (of); considerate (about)she was always attentive to his needs
Word Origin and History for overattentive
late 14c. (implied in attentively), from Old French attentif, from Vulgar Latin *attenditus, from Latin attentus "heedful, observant" (see attend). Sense of "actively ministering to the needs and wants" (of another person) is from early 16c. Related: Attentively.