Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “polite”

polite

adjective uk   /pəˈlaɪt/ us  
A2 behaving in a way that is socially correct and shows understanding of and care for other people's feelings: I'm afraid I wasn't very polite to her. She sent me a polite letter thanking me for my invitation. He was too polite to point out my mistake.Polite and respectfulPolite and respectful socially correct rather than friendly: polite conversationBehaving well polite society/company old-fashioned or humorous people who have been taught how to behave in a socially correct way: Sex never used to be discussed in polite society.Behaving well
politeness
noun [U] uk   /-nəs/ us  
(Definition of polite from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of polite?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Polite and respectful, but you might be interested in these topics from the Admiration and respect topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “polite” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

blueprint

a photographic copy of an early plan for a building or machine

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More