Definition of gracious in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɡreɪʃəs/


1Courteous, kind, and pleasant, especially towards someone of lower social status: a gracious hostess Greig was gracious in defeat
More example sentences
  • A pleasant, courteous and gracious lady, Vera was highly thought of by all in the community.
  • A pleasant, courteous and gracious lady, she was well liked by her neighbours in the locality.
  • Sean was a pleasant, courteous and gracious neighbour who could always be relied on to lend a helping hand.
courteous, polite, civil, chivalrous, well mannered, decorous, gentlemanly, ladylike, civilized, tactful, diplomatic;
kind, kindly, kind-hearted, warm-hearted, benevolent, considerate, thoughtful, obliging, accommodating, charitable, indulgent, magnanimous, beneficent, benign;
friendly, pleasant, amiable, affable, cordial, hospitable
informal couth
British informal decent
dated mannerly
1.1Showing the elegance and comfort brought by wealth or high social status: gracious living
More example sentences
  • City of grandiose and elegant façades, the gracious arcades of the Galleria Vittorio Emanuelle, here the Milanese mix their cool pragmatism with a love of the good life.
  • Their rambling villa once a model of gracious elegance was now a paradise of dry rot and borer, with its skeletal verandah, rickety walls and warped weatherboards.
  • Here is a room designed for comfort, yet gracious and formal enough for hosting even the most important parties.
elegant, stylish, tasteful, graceful, comfortable, luxurious, sumptuous, opulent, grand, plush, high-class, exquisite, smart, sophisticated, fashionable, modish, chic
informal swanky
2(In Christian belief) showing divine grace: I am saved by God’s gracious intervention on my behalf
More example sentences
  • Boil it down and that's my calling - to announce the gracious lordship of Jesus Christ.
  • The last was the manifestation of true religion - genuinely gracious affections - in Christian practice.
  • The Christian principle of gracious forgiveness is, then, a good one, but it is extremely difficult for Christians themselves to observe it.
merciful, forgiving, compassionate, kind, kindly, lenient, clement, pitying, forbearing, humane, mild, soft-hearted, tender-hearted, sympathetic;
patient, humanitarian, liberal, easy-going, permissive, tolerant, indulgent, generous, magnanimous, beneficent, benign, benignant, benevolent
3British A polite epithet used of royalty or their acts: the accession of Her present gracious Majesty
More example sentences
  • My master, who was the most prominent courtier to his most gracious Majesty, the Emperor Kao, may he live ten thousand years.
  • Nevertheless, his widow, the gracious Princess Lom was at the Royal Varuna Yacht Club last weekend, to place the Prince's imprimatur on the championship.
  • The gracious King Louis XVI signed over one million dollars in arms and munitions.


Used to express polite surprise: good gracious, that was close!
More example sentences
  • Well, good gracious me, I was very pleasantly surprised.
  • Oh good gracious, was Faith in love too?



Pronunciation: /ˈɡreɪʃəsnəs/
Example sentences
  • It was the elder son, he said, who just could not accept the generosity and graciousness of his father in welcoming back a lost and wayward brother.
  • I've occasionally seen him angry, but I must tell you he always treated people with enormous graciousness and friendliness.
  • Norm's winning personality, graciousness, and loyal friendship were manifested in many pleasant times and conversations.


Middle English: via Old French from Latin gratiosus, from gratia 'esteem, favour' (see grace).

Words that rhyme with gracious

Athanasius, audacious, bodacious, cactaceous, capacious, carbonaceous, contumacious, Cretaceous, curvaceous, disputatious, edacious, efficacious, fallacious, farinaceous, flirtatious, foliaceous, fugacious, hellacious, herbaceous, Ignatius, loquacious, mendacious, mordacious, ostentatious, perspicacious, pertinacious, pugnacious, rapacious, sagacious, salacious, saponaceous, sebaceous, sequacious, setaceous, spacious, tenacious, veracious, vexatious, vivacious, voracious

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: gra|cious

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