What does pretty mean?

Definitions for pretty
ˈprɪt ipret·ty

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word pretty.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. prettyadjective

    pleasing by delicacy or grace; not imposing

    "pretty girl"; "pretty song"; "pretty room"

  2. prettyadverb

    (used ironically) unexpectedly bad

    "a pretty mess"; "a pretty kettle of fish"

  3. reasonably, moderately, pretty, jolly, somewhat, fairly, middling, passablyadverb

    to a moderately sufficient extent or degree

    "pretty big"; "pretty bad"; "jolly decent of him"; "the shoes are priced reasonably"; "he is fairly clever with computers"


  1. prettynoun

    Something that is pretty.

    "We'll stop at the knife store a look at the sharp pretties.

  2. prettyverb

    To make pretty; to beautify

  3. prettyadverb

    Somewhat, fairly, quite; sometimes also (by meiosis) very.

  4. prettyadjective

    Cunning; clever, skilful.

  5. prettyadjective

    Pleasant in sight or other senses; attractive, especially of women or children.

  6. prettyadjective

    Of objects or things: nice-looking, appealing.

  7. prettyadjective

    Fine-looking; only superficially attractive; initially appealing but having little substance.

  8. prettyadjective

    Moderately large; considerable.

  9. prettyadjective

    Excellent, commendable, pleasing; fitting or proper (of actions, thoughts etc.).

  10. prettyadjective

    Awkward, unpleasant.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. PRETTYadjective

    Etymology: præt, finery, Sax. pretto, Italian; prat, prattigh, Dutch.

    Of these the idle Greeks have many pretty tales. Walter Raleigh.

    They found themselves involved in a train of mistakes, by taking up some pretty hypothesis in philosophy. Isaac Watts.

    The pretty gentleman is the most complaisant creature in the world, and is always of my mind. Spectator.

    A pretty task; and so I told the fool,
    Who needs must undertake to please by rule. Dryden.

    He’ll make a pretty figure in a triumph,
    And serve to trip before the victor’s chariot. Addison.

    A knight of Wales, with shipping and some pretty company, did go to discover those parts. George Abbot.

    Cut off the stalks of cucumbers, immediately after their bearing, close by the earth, and then cast a pretty quantity of earth upon the plant, and they will bear next year before the ordinary time. Francis Bacon, Nat. Hist.

    I would have a mount of some pretty height, leaving the wall of the enclosure breast high. Francis Bacon, Essays.

    Of this mixture we put a parcel into a crucible, and suffered it for a pretty while to continue red hot. Boyle.

    A weazle a pretty way off stood leering at him. Roger L'Estrange.

  2. Prettyadverb

    In some degree. This word is used before adverbs or adjectives to intend their signification: it is less than very.

    The world begun to be pretty well stocked with people, and human industry drained those unhabitable places. Burnet.

    I shall not enquire how far this lofty method may advance the reputation of learning; but I am pretty sure ’tis no great addition to theirs who use it. Collier.

    A little voyage round the lake took up five days, though the wind was pretty fair for us all the while. Addison.

    I have a fondness for a project, and a pretty tolerable genius that way myself. Joseph Addison, Guardian, №. 107.

    These colours were faint and dilute, unless the light was trajected obliquely; for by that means they became pretty vivid. Isaac Newton, Opticks.

    This writer every where insinuates, and, in one place, pretty plainly professes himself a sincere christian. Francis Atterbury.

    The copper halfpence are coined by the publick, and every piece worth pretty near the value of the copper. Jonathan Swift.

    The first attempts of this kind were pretty modest. Thomas Baker.


  1. pretty

    Pretty is an adjective that describes something or someone as visually pleasing, attractive, or aesthetically appealing. It is often used to convey a sense of beauty, charm, elegance, or loveliness. The term can apply to various aspects, including physical appearance, clothing, objects, or places.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Pretty

    pleasing by delicacy or grace; attracting, but not striking or impressing; of a pleasing and attractive form a color; having slight or diminutive beauty; neat or elegant without elevation or grandeur; pleasingly, but not grandly, conceived or expressed; as, a pretty face; a pretty flower; a pretty poem

  2. Pretty

    moderately large; considerable; as, he had saved a pretty fortune

  3. Pretty

    affectedly nice; foppish; -- used in an ill sense

  4. Pretty

    mean; despicable; contemptible; -- used ironically; as, a pretty trick; a pretty fellow

  5. Pretty

    stout; strong and brave; intrepid; valiant

  6. Prettyadverb

    in some degree; moderately; considerably; rather; almost; -- less emphatic than very; as, I am pretty sure of the fact; pretty cold weather


  1. Pretty

    Pretty is a television advertisement launched in 2006 by Nike, Inc. to promote its Nike Women brand of sportswear. The 60-second spot was handled by advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy in Portland, Oregon. The advert stars Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova in her first appearance as a spokesperson for the brand. Pretty debuted on U.S. television on August 20, 2006, with later appearances in cinemas and in print advertisements. It was directed by Czech director Ivan Zacharias, with post-production and VFX work by The Mill. The piece was a critical and popular success. It garnered several prestigious awards from the advertising and television industries, including two Cannes Gold Lions and a Gold Effie Award.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Pretty

    pret′i, adj. tasteful: pleasing to the eye: having attractive but not striking beauty: neat: beautiful without dignity: small: affected: moderately large, considerable: puny, weak (a term of endearment): (in contempt) fine: (obs.) shrewd, cunning: (obs.) strong, warlike.—adv. in some degree: moderately.—v.t. Prett′ify, to make pretty in an excessively ornamental way.—adv. Prett′ily, in a pretty manner: pleasingly: elegantly: neatly.—n. Prett′iness.—adj. Prett′yish, somewhat pretty.—n. Prett′ypretty (coll.), a knick-knack.—adj. Prett′y-spō′ken, speaking or spoken prettily.—Pretty much, very nearly. [A.S. prættig, tricky—prætt, trickery; prob. Low L. practicus—Gr. praktikosprattein, to do.]

Editors Contribution

  1. pretty

    An aesthetic, between cute and beautiful. Attractive in a Delicate way.

    I don't care for pretty looking men.

    Submitted by anonymous on March 17, 2021  

Surnames Frequency by Census Records


    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Pretty is ranked #26975 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Pretty surname appeared 899 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Pretty.

    66.4% or 597 total occurrences were White.
    24% or 216 total occurrences were Black.
    6.2% or 56 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    1.6% or 15 total occurrences were of two or more races.
    1% or 9 total occurrences were Asian.
    0.6% or 6 total occurrences were American Indian or Alaskan Native.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'pretty' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2435

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'pretty' in Written Corpus Frequency: #765

  3. Adverbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'pretty' in Adverbs Frequency: #166

  4. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'pretty' in Adjectives Frequency: #445

How to pronounce pretty?

How to say pretty in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of pretty in Chaldean Numerology is: 6

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of pretty in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5

Examples of pretty in a Sentence

  1. Lin Xi Yu:

    I think today is pretty good round for me, actually when I played in the practice round, I thought, this place is pretty tough, and also I'm pretty surprised what I'm doing today. So I'm really satisfied with my game today.

  2. Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt, p. 205:

    Even he, to whom most things that most people would think were pretty smart were pretty dumb, thought it was pretty smart.

  3. Bernie Sanders:

    Well, I thought it was pretty, pretty, pretty good.

  4. Elizabeth Taylor:

    The problem with people who have no vices is that generally you can be pretty sure they're going to have some pretty annoying virtues.

  5. Barry Schwartz:

    Pretty ugly today. Sour moods out in the markets, we've had a pretty good start to the year for the Toronto market. It's beaten some of the other U.S. indices and it's having a pretty good month. End of the month can always be wacky and weird and people are positioning their portfolios.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for pretty

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"pretty." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 1 Oct. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/pretty>.

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    something that seduces or has the quality to seduce
    • A. temptation
    • B. confectionery
    • C. investigating
    • D. vehicle

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