See more synonyms for respectable on
  1. worthy of respect or esteem; estimable; worthy: a respectable citizen.
  2. of good social standing, reputation, etc.: a respectable neighborhood.
  3. suitable or good enough to be seen or used: respectable clothes; respectable language.
  4. of moderate excellence; fairly good; fair: a respectable performance.
  5. appreciable in size, number, or amount: a respectable turnout.

Origin of respectable

First recorded in 1580–90; respect + -able
Related formsre·spect·a·ble·ness, nounre·spect·a·bly, adverbnon·re·spect·a·ble, adjectivenon·re·spect·a·ble·ness, nounnon·re·spect·a·bly, adverbpre·re·spect·a·ble, adjectivequa·si-re·spect·a·ble, adjectivequa·si-re·spect·a·bly, adverbsem·i·re·spect·a·ble, adjectivesu·per·re·spect·a·ble, adjectivesu·per·re·spect·a·ble·ness, nounsu·per·re·spect·a·bly, adverbul·tra·re·spect·a·ble, adjectiveul·tra·re·spect·a·bly, adverbul·tra·re·spect·a·ble·ness, nounun·re·spect·a·ble, adjective

Synonyms for respectable

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for respectable

Contemporary Examples of respectable

Historical Examples of respectable

  • This was a cousin of Miss Moreton's, a respectable clergyman.

  • One of these days the respectable Republic will find this out.

    American Notes

    Rudyard Kipling

  • This inn was kept by two respectable ladies, who were sisters.

    Welsh Fairy Tales

    William Elliott Griffis

  • She smoked cigarettes, and he could not think that this would have been respectable in any other woman.

  • She knew that in that quarter everyone is not respectable, but everyone is kind.

British Dictionary definitions for respectable


  1. having or deserving the respect of other people; estimable; worthy
  2. having good social standing or reputation
  3. having socially or conventionally acceptable morals, standards, etca respectable woman
  4. relatively or fairly good; considerablea respectable salary
  5. fit to be seen by other people; presentable
Derived Formsrespectability or rare respectableness, nounrespectably, adverb
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 respectable

"worthy of esteem," 1580s; see respect (v.) + -able. Sense of "having an honest reputation" is from 1755. That of "occupying a fairly good position in society" is c.1800. Related: Respectably.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper