Meaning of polite in English:


Pronunciation /pəˈlʌɪt/

See synonyms for polite

Translate polite into Spanish

adjectiveadjective politer, adjective politest

  • 1Having or showing behaviour that is respectful and considerate of other people.

    ‘they thought she was wrong but were too polite to say so’
    • ‘In the UK, and most of Europe, it is not considered polite to just say what you want.’
    • ‘You could tell he didn't think much of my work, though he was far too polite to blurt it out.’
    • ‘You could hand around evaluation forms, but many people are too polite to tell you what they really thought.’
    • ‘For instance, if you want your child to have good manners, make sure she sees you being polite to others.’
    • ‘It seemed only polite to say goodnight with a kiss, just between friends.’
    • ‘Looks of despair flashed across all of their faces, but to their credit they were too polite to outwardly groan.’
    • ‘He was extremely polite to his opponents and often took up cudgels for them too.’
    • ‘They also learn that sometimes it's polite to lie to spare the feelings of others.’
    • ‘I think it's only polite to make the effort in the local language even if everyone does seem to speak English.’
    • ‘Even if you think that someone is kind of weird, it is always polite to be nice to them.’
    • ‘When guests visit you, it is polite to welcome them with kind words and serve them what you have.’
    • ‘It's certainly polite to ask, and you have my full permission, for whatever that's worth.’
    • ‘Is it too much to ask if I just want someone normal, unperverted, and polite to talk to?’
    • ‘Most of the kids were too polite to tell it to their parents, but it was evident in their behavior.’
    • ‘If you are going into a bar or pub, with a woman is it more polite to let them go first, or to go first yourself to check that the place is safe?’
    • ‘She's too polite to tell him to shut up and go away, so we put up with him.’
    • ‘You know we bend over backwards in work to be helpful and polite to people.’
    • ‘It would have been polite to at least acknowledge it rather than tossing it aside like a dirty tissue.’
    • ‘I myself forgot about these issues and most people are too polite to mention them.’
    • ‘He heard a young comedian being interviewed on the radio the other day and is far too polite to name him.’
    well mannered, civil, courteous, respectful, deferential, well behaved, well bred, gentlemanly, ladylike, chivalrous, gallant, genteel, cultivated, gracious, urbane, well brought up
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    1. 1.1attributive Relating to people who regard themselves as more cultured and refined than others.
      ‘the picture outraged polite society’
      • ‘Over the years he built a pagoda to polite English society as it faded in the glare of post-war vulgarity.’
      • ‘But lay into others and you should prepare to be visited by the vengeance of polite society.’
      • ‘There are still some things that cannot be talked about in polite society.’
      • ‘In short, he has made an asset from features others find a hindrance to acceptance in polite society.’
      • ‘In certain circles of polite society he is known as the Citra Fiend and cannot be trusted in matters of fruit.’
      • ‘That is the root problem, indeed the only problem, but it is not mentioned in polite society.’
      • ‘In this world she expresses sides to her character that struggle for oxygen in polite society.’
      • ‘It took my mum to point out that Botox is now fully integrated into polite society.’
      • ‘He may have been born into polite society but Degas was no gentleman painter.’
      • ‘The musical life of polite European society was a different world altogether.’
      • ‘The reaction of polite society to this extraordinary work was one of astonishment.’
      • ‘It would be regarded as not the thing to do in polite company in, for instance, Pacific Rim countries.’
      • ‘In the mind of a desperate prisoner you sometimes find genius that is seldom recognized in more polite society.’
      • ‘And the phrase ‘national interest’ should never be mentioned in polite society.’
      • ‘Yes, but in polite society, one does not hear of this.’
      civilized, refined, cultured, sophisticated, genteel, well bred, urbane, elegant, courtly
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Late Middle English (in the Latin sense): from Latin politus ‘polished, made smooth’, past participle of polire.