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[ri-sawrs-fuh l, -sohrs-, -zawrs-, -zohrs-] /rɪˈsɔrs fəl, -ˈsoʊrs-, -ˈzɔrs-, -ˈzoʊrs-/
able to deal skillfully and promptly with new situations, difficulties, etc.
Origin of resourceful
First recorded in 1850-55; resource + -ful
Related forms
resourcefully, adverb
resourcefulness, noun
self-resourceful, adjective
self-resourcefully, adverb
self-resourcefulness, noun
unresourceful, adjective
unresourcefully, adverb
unresourcefulness, noun
talented, able, imaginative, adroit. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for resourcefulness
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Proud of her resourcefulness she looked askance at Sofya's serious, stern face.

    Mother Maksim Gorky
  • resourcefulness was there, but no hint of boldness and her moods of timidity were exquisite.

  • Gradually, however, a new class emerges from utter helplessness into an encouraging self-confidence and resourcefulness.

  • He had come to the end of his resourcefulness in the art of probing for facts.

    No Clue James Hay
  • In the reaction of relief from casualty, resourcefulness now might plead for him.

  • In the first place, I am learning to admire the resourcefulness of these people around us.

  • The brain that had never failed had proved its resourcefulness once again in this hour of dire trouble.

    Little Lost Sister Virginia Brooks
  • I had faith in Potokomik and his resourcefulness, and was hopeful they would get out safely.

    The Long Labrador Trail Dillon Wallace
British Dictionary definitions for resourcefulness


/rɪˈzɔːsfʊl; -ˈsɔːs-/
ingenious, capable, and full of initiative, esp in dealing with difficult situations
Derived Forms
resourcefully, adverb
resourcefulness, noun
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 resourcefulness



1807, from resource + -ful. Related: Resourcefully; resourcefulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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