Definition of rightful in English:

rightful

adjective

  • 1[attributive] Having a legitimate right to property, position, or status:

    ‘the rightful owner of the jewels’
    • ‘Who are the rightful heirs of Babylon or the Ottoman Empire?’
    • ‘In Mrs Laverty's case it shouldn't have been too difficult to establish that the rightful owner was using the parking bay.’
    • ‘It is my firm view that the rightful owners of the Lissadell Estate have not been compensated for their losses.’
    • ‘Detectives from Scotland Yard's art and antiques squad are hoping to return the possessions to their rightful owners.’
    • ‘He was traced ten years later and restored to his rightful position in the lineage.’
    • ‘Land that's occupied must be returned to its rightful owners, he says.’
    • ‘The hoard of silver was found inside the box and Mr Manning established that he was the rightful heir to the property.’
    • ‘The latter have no wish to return that land to its rightful owners.’
    • ‘Property belongs to the rightful owner, to lawfully use as he or she sees fit.’
    • ‘But the local education authority has instructed a solicitor to establish who the rightful owner is.’
    • ‘Mr Cash is currently working on uncovering the missing pieces of Anne's life in the hope that it will lead him to the rightful heir of the fortune.’
    • ‘He was the rightful heir, as the only child of the Barlow family.’
    • ‘Whether she finally acknowledged James VI of Scotland as her rightful successor will never be known for certain.’
    • ‘Encouraged by some of his friends, he tried to declare himself the rightful heir.’
    • ‘Halifax Bank is trying to reunited £15m of its shares with their rightful Scottish owners.’
    • ‘He then thought he would do the responsible thing by trying to return the property to its rightful owner.’
    • ‘We urge residents to let us know if they suspect anyone of not being the rightful occupier of a property.’
    • ‘It will also allow us to return any property that is stolen to its rightful owners.’
    • ‘She even insisted that Mary was the rightful heir to the throne of England.’
    • ‘Paul believed that ‘fate had decided’ he should find the ring and he set about trying to find its rightful owner.’
    legal, lawful, licit, sanctioned
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    1. 1.1 Legitimately claimed; fitting:
      ‘they are determined to take their rightful place in a new South Africa’
      • ‘After seven lean years in the lower divisions, the Jags are back in their rightful position in the premier.’
      • ‘It makes me happy to think that soon my generation can help Romania get to their rightful place among the best teams of the world.’
      • ‘That great party used to fume and fizz if in a single freak election it was denied its rightful place as the natural party of government.’
      • ‘Franklin sat his steaming cup of coffee down and took his rightful place behind his large mahogany desk.’
      • ‘He takes his rightful place among the elite, and the world in which the best and brightest are rewarded is saved again.’
      • ‘She stressed that women should take their rightful place in the commanding heights of the country's economy.’
      • ‘On St. Patrick's Day, in Croke Park, the club had its rightful place in the sun.’
      • ‘Taken together, this restores patients to their rightful place as the experts in their own health and genuine partners in care.’
      • ‘Before then, Johnson has the small matter of restoring Leicester to what he believes is his club's rightful place.’
      • ‘But now we can take our rightful place at the head of, and slightly left of, society.’
      • ‘Did Bobkov say that he wished this to take its rightful place in the history books?’
      • ‘The television has at last gained its rightful and proper place as household god, oracle and shrine.’
      • ‘You see, we don't want to change the world - we just want our rightful place in it.’
      • ‘In essence, Sligo would claim its rightful place as capital of the North West.’
      • ‘We shall also have the Christ child taking his rightful place in the Christmas season.’
      • ‘It was a match to remember, a player with a touch of genius restoring a dampened Wimbledon to its rightful place as the epitome of tennis.’
      • ‘There is no question that he has found his rightful place in the pack.’
      • ‘Johannesburg is about to take its rightful place as one of South Africa's premier tourism destinations.’
      • ‘It would also restore France to what it sees as its rightful place as leader of Europe.’
      • ‘There's a mountain of work to be done if they are to get back their rightful place in senior ranks.’
      deserved, well deserved, merited, earned, well earned
      View synonyms

Origin

Old English rihtful ‘upright, righteous’(see right, -ful). The notion of ‘legitimacy’ dates from Middle English.

Pronunciation:

rightful

/ˈrʌɪtfʊl/