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From Latin gratus (pleasing, agreeable) + -ful, morphologically grate +‎ -ful.


  • IPA(key): /ˈɡɹeɪtfəl/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪtfəl
  • Hyphenation: grate‧ful


grateful (comparative gratefuller or more grateful, superlative gratefullest or most grateful)

  1. Appreciative; thankful.
    I'm grateful that you helped me out.
    I'm grateful to you for helping me out.
    • 2012 May 5, Phil McNulty, “Chelsea 2-1 Liverpool”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      Carroll thought he had equalised with his header against the bar with eight minutes left. Liverpool claimed the ball had cross the line and Chelsea were grateful for a miraculous intervention from Cech to turn his effort on to the woodwork.
  2. (obsolete or archaic) Pleasing, welcome.
    • c. 1590–1592 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Taming of the Shrew”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act II, scene i]:
      Neighbour, this is a gift very grateful, I am sure of it.
    • 1659–1660, Thomas Stanley, “[The Doctrine of Epicurus.] Chapter XXIII. Of Fortitude, against Discontent of Mind.”, in The History of Philosophy, the Third and Last Volume, [], volume III, London: [] Humphrey Moseley, and Thomas Dring, [], →OCLC, 5th part (Containing the Epicurean Sect), 3rd part of philosophy (Ethick, or Morals), page 261:
      [T]he aſſwagement of his [a wise man's] diſcontent conſiſts in two things, formerly preſcribed as remedies againſt corporeall pain; viz. Diverſion of his thoughts from his loſſe, or the cause of it; and an application of them to thoſe things, which he knowes to be gratefull and pleaſant to his mind.
    • 1839, Robert Hooper, Klein Grant, Lexicon Medicum: or, Medical Dictionary, 4th edition, page 1177:
      [] its glands give forth gum arabic; and its flowers an odour of a very grateful fragrance.
    • 1841, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Skeleton in Armor[2]:
      Fell I upon my spear,
      Oh, death was grateful!
    • 1847 March 30, Herman Melville, chapter 67, in Omoo: A Narrative of Adventures in the South Seas; [], London: John Murray, [], →OCLC:
      [] grateful underfoot was the damp and slightly yielding beach, from which the waves seemed just retired.
    • 1929, “Introduction”, in Theodore Howard Banks, Jr., transl., Sir Gawain and The Green Knight, New York: F. S. Crofts & Co., Inc., →OCLC, pages 7–8:
      The system of four-beat alliterative Anglo-Saxon poetry permitted such a range of unaccented syllables between stresses that an exact reproduction of this quality seemed undesirable. The translator, has, therefore, permitted himself no more than two unaccented syllables between stresses [...] The resultant effect is a freely equivalenced anapestic measure, perhaps more grateful to modern ears than the less normalized beat of the original.



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