Humboldt remarks that a few drops of vegetable juice recall to our minds all the powerfulness and the fecundity of nature.
The novel stirred me—not by its powerfulness, for it did not set out to be powerful—but by its individuality and distinction.
The powerfulness of the telescope depends on the size of the light-gatherer.
A few drops of vegetable juice recall to our minds all the powerfulness and the fecundity of nature.
I know nothing like it either in strength of colouring or powerfulness of effect.
c.1400, from power (n.) + -ful. Meaning "of great quality or number" is from 1811; colloquial sense of "exceedingly" (adv.) is from 1822. Related: Powerfully. Thornton ("American Glossary") notes powerful as "Much used by common people in the sense of very," along with monstrous and cites curious expressions such as devilish good, monstrous pretty (1799), dreadful polite, cruel pretty, abominable fine (1803), "or when a young lady admires a lap dog for being so vastly small and declares him prodigious handsome" (1799).