showing consideration for others; considerate.
characterized by or manifesting careful thought: a thoughtful essay.
occupied with or given to thought; contemplative; meditative; reflective: in a thoughtful mood.
careful, heedful, or mindful: to be thoughtful of one's safety.

Origin of thoughtful

Middle English word dating back to 1150–1200; see origin at thought1, -ful
Related formsthought·ful·ly, adverbthought·ful·ness, nouno·ver·thought·ful, adjectiveo·ver·thought·ful·ly, adverbo·ver·thought·ful·ness, nounun·thought·ful, adjectiveun·thought·ful·ly, adverbun·thought·ful·ness, noun

Synonyms for thoughtful

1. attentive, solicitous. Thoughtful, considerate mean taking thought for the comfort and the good of others. Thoughtful implies providing little attentions, offering services, or in some way looking out for the comfort or welfare of others: It was thoughtful of you to send the flowers. Considerate implies sparing others annoyance or discomfort, and being careful not to hurt their feelings: not considerate of his family. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for thoughtfulness

kindness, helpfulness, indulgence, understanding

Examples from the Web for thoughtfulness

Contemporary Examples of thoughtfulness

Historical Examples of thoughtfulness

  • "Some of us ought to tell Reddy of Jessica's thoughtfulness," teased Anne.

  • Already, he had carelessly dropped the thoughtfulness by which he had won her.


    Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

  • "I see," I said; and let myself drift away from her into thoughtfulness.

    It Happened in Egypt

    C. N. Williamson

  • "I see," he said, and seemed to need a moment or two of thoughtfulness.

    Alice Adams

    Booth Tarkington

  • What she would before have lacked, was discipline and thoughtfulness.


    Henry Morford

British Dictionary definitions for thoughtfulness



considerate in the treatment of other people
showing careful thought
pensive; reflective
Derived Formsthoughtfully, adverbthoughtfulness, 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 thoughtfulness



c.1200, "contemplative," from thought + -ful. Also in Middle English, "prudent; moody, anxious." Meaning "showing consideration for others" is from 1851 (cf. thoughtless.) Related: Thoughtfully; thoughtfulness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper