One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Polite, respectful, or considerate in manner.
polite, well mannered, civil, respectful, deferential, well behaved, well bredView synonyms
- ‘Andrew was a very gentle, courteous man with huge respect for everyone he worked with.’
- ‘Tom was a pleasant courteous gentleman who was well liked in the local farming community.’
- ‘Walking someone to the door will once again be considered a courteous gesture.’
- ‘Women never say thank you when you are courteous and polite, only if you comment on their appearance.’
- ‘But shop assistants insisted the star was polite and courteous throughout her visit.’
- ‘I remember being struck, the few times I met him, by how courteous his manner was.’
- ‘Remember to curtsey or bow, and be polite and courteous to everyone.’
- ‘That will depend to a large extent on how courteous and considerate motorists are.’
- ‘Ernest was an old fashioned sort, well mannered and courteous, quietly spoken, and above all a gentleman.’
- ‘Your courteous manner generates a lot of goodwill and will also earn you respect.’
- ‘Sean was a pleasant, courteous and gracious neighbour who could always be relied on to lend a helping hand.’
- ‘More people were coming inside and Sarah was polite and courteous to every one of them.’
- ‘One should not be arrogant or insolent but rather be kind, considerate and courteous towards them.’
- ‘But you can at least be polite, courteous and respect the fact that your views are very different to theirs.’
- ‘Pleasant, courteous and gracious, Noreen was devoted to her family and friends.’
- ‘A pleasant and courteous gentleman, he was highly regarded as a neighbour and friend.’
- ‘I made the short walk to my booth number, and was greeted by two courteous and polite women.’
- ‘They were respectful and courteous and asked my father's permission to speak to him alone.’
- ‘You need each other, so be courteous and considerate, as you would ask them to be to you.’
- ‘A polite, courteous, almost lavender man, he seems the model of bourgeois propriety.’
Middle English (meaning ‘having manners fit for a royal court’): from Old French corteis, based on Latin cohors ‘yard, retinue’ (see court). The change in the ending in the 16th century was due to association with words ending in -eous.
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