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90s Slang You Should Know


[ri-spekt-fuh l] /rɪˈspɛkt fəl/
full of, characterized by, or showing politeness or deference:
a respectful reply.
Origin of respectful
First recorded in 1590-1600; respect + -ful
Related forms
respectfully, adverb
respectfulness, noun
quasi-respectful, adjective
quasi-respectfully, adverb
unrespectful, adjective
unrespectfully, adverb
unrespectfulness, noun
courteous, polite, decorous, civil, deferential.
discourteous, disrespectful. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for respectfully
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Kerlman laid his fat thumb on the table and regarded it respectfully.

    Unfinished Portraits Jennette Lee
  • "I didn't sleep on guard, sir," interposed Richard, mildly and respectfully.

    In School and Out Oliver Optic
  • Singapore respectfully salutes you, and is very glad that you can't see him as he now appears.

    Dear Enemy Jean Webster
  • Even the hand that I had taken in mine was respectfully withdrawn!

    The Quadroon Mayne Reid
  • The woman's eyes, which had been respectfully studying her face, brightened with a relief which made her communicative.

    The Golden Slipper Anna Katharine Green
British Dictionary definitions for respectfully


full of, showing, or giving respect
Derived Forms
respectfully, adverb
respectfulness, 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 respectfully



1580s, "characterized by respect" (implied in respectfully), from respect (n.) + -ful. Meaning "full of outward civility" attested from 1680s. Related: Respectfulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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