Definition of merciful in English:



  • 1Showing or exercising mercy:

    ‘William did not believe in being merciful to those who fought against him’
    • ‘William did not believe in being merciful to those who fought against him.’
    • ‘So the generous, merciful boys in blue gave him his own space.’
    • ‘Being a servant means always wanting to help others; it is being compassionate and merciful.’
    • ‘His teachings included temperance, being thankful to the Creator, merciful to children and the poor, and the evil of greed and pride.’
    • ‘The difficult task is to find ways of being merciful to the guilty without being cruel to the innocent.’
    • ‘The rabbis tell us that ‘he who is merciful to the cruel will feel indifference for the innocent.’’
    • ‘They instilled fear into every ship that crossed their waters, though they often were merciful to those who surrendered.’
    • ‘It is, to say the least, difficult to understand how it is possible to be loving and merciful to people one is trying to kill.’
    • ‘Blessed are you, my sisters, when you are merciful to the oppressed.’
    • ‘Still, that same crowd was merciful to the ignorant.’
    • ‘The expression on the goddess' face was merciful and compassionate.’
    • ‘It continued: ‘You are merciful to all because you can do all things’.’
    • ‘Be merciful to the other creations so the Creator will have mercy on you.’
    • ‘He was merciful to me and my family, especially my parents.’
    • ‘May He show His face to you and be merciful to you.’
    • ‘At least he would be more merciful to them and give them a quick end.’
    • ‘I'm happy and glad to see that God is merciful and generous towards all people, whether they are religious or not.’
    • ‘I think that in turn we should be merciful to those who sin against us, without our mercy leading us to neglect our responsibilities to others.’
    • ‘To Rich, his brother suddenly appeared as some benign leader, the merciful father taking his excitable daughters on holiday.’
    • ‘Is this the action of a merciful and compassionate loving deity?’
    show mercy to, have mercy on, have pity on, spare, pardon, forgive, let off, be lenient on, be lenient to, deal leniently with
    be easy on, go easy on
    forgiving, compassionate, gracious, lenient, clement, pitying, forbearing, humane, mild, soft-hearted, tender-hearted, kind, kindly, sympathetic
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    1. 1.1 (of an event) coming as a mercy; bringing someone relief from something unpleasant:
      ‘her death was a merciful release’
      • ‘Captain America has just been asked if he wants to surrender and receive a quick and merciful death.’
      • ‘Perhaps, in the light of her illness, it was a merciful release.’
      • ‘There is no shelter for them to find merciful relief from their vilification.’
      • ‘So we let the brief conversation come to a merciful end and they started to walk away.’
      • ‘It's a merciful release from reliance on parents, one's own way to the movies or a friend's house.’
      • ‘When a disabled child dies some people think it is a merciful release but it was the beginning of a nightmare for us.’
      • ‘For a while there, it didn't seem like it was ever going to happen but 1998 has finally come to a merciful end.’
      • ‘Bombing would have been, it was believed, a merciful end to those who suffered unimaginable horrors there.’
      • ‘The most the Old Testament writers hope for is a ripe old age ended by a quick and merciful death.’
      • ‘Confused he walked back to dying chief, he was calling out for a merciful death.’
      • ‘It's also a taste of things to come, a reward for the patient, and a merciful release for the tortured.’
      • ‘His death was undoubtedly merciful, but he left a sad gap among his dwindling circle of friends.’
      • ‘With the unfairness of it all, the final whistle was a merciful relief.’
      • ‘Instead of compelling the patient to lead the terrible life of an invalid, the doctor should have let the patient die a merciful death, the media argued.’
      • ‘But we do not seem to be getting anything like the amount of government we pay for (which might come to some people as a merciful relief).’
      • ‘My yearning and lust for this movie was unquenchable at the time, rivaling my current prayers for a quick and merciful death.’
      • ‘It may be that the gods are merciful when they make our lives more unpleasant as we grow old.’
      • ‘So perhaps he was pleading for a merciful death?’
      • ‘After reading about 40 pages, she fell into a merciful, dreamless sleep.’
      • ‘After the merciful demise of her husband in 1842 her activities became less camouflaged and in the 1850s she was involving herself in the serf problem.’
      welcome, blessed, acceptable
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