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See more synonyms for attentive on Thesaurus.com
  1. characterized by or giving attention; observant: an attentive audience.
  2. thoughtful of others; considerate; polite; courteous: an attentive host.
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Origin of attentive

1375–1425; late Middle English (Scots) < Middle French; see attent, -ive
Related formsat·ten·tive·ly, adverbat·ten·tive·ness, nouno·ver·at·ten·tive, adjectiveo·ver·at·ten·tive·ly, adverbo·ver·at·ten·tive·ness, nounun·at·ten·tive, adjectiveun·at·ten·tive·ly, adverbun·at·ten·tive·ness, noun

Synonyms for attentive

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Antonyms for attentive

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for attentiveness

diligence, consideration, vigilance, concentration, watchfulness, alertness, regard, solicitude, respect, thoughtfulness, concern, TLC, solicitousness, politeness

Examples from the Web for attentiveness

Contemporary Examples of attentiveness

Historical Examples of attentiveness

  • He answered, looking down into her eyes, which were full of attentiveness.

    At Fault

    Kate Chopin.

  • He was assured then of their attentiveness and protected from their interruption.

    The Bishop's Apron

    W. Somerset Maugham

  • The kindness and attentiveness of this man are simply wonderful.

  • All this cordial kindness and attentiveness were putting him at his ease.

    The Woman of Mystery

    Maurice Leblanc

  • He understood her attentiveness to his comfort when she touched his arm and begged a word with him.


    Jane Abbott

British Dictionary definitions for attentiveness


  1. paying attention; listening carefully; observant
  2. (postpositive often foll by to) careful to fulfil the needs or wants (of); considerate (about)she was always attentive to his needs
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Derived Formsattentively, adverbattentiveness, 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

Word Origin and History for attentiveness


mid-15c., from attentive + -ness.

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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.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper