Etymology
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thoughtful (adj.)

c. 1200, "contemplative, occupied with thought," from thought + -ful. Also in Middle English, "prudent; moody, anxious." Meaning "showing consideration for others" is from 1851 (compare thoughtless.) Related: Thoughtfully; thoughtfulness.

updated on January 29, 2014

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Definitions of thoughtful from WordNet

thoughtful (adj.)
having intellectual depth;
a deeply thoughtful essay
thoughtful (adj.)
exhibiting or characterized by careful thought;
a thoughtful paper
thoughtful (adj.)
acting with or showing thought and good sense;
Synonyms: serious-minded
thoughtful (adj.)
considerate of the feelings or well-being of others;
thoughtful (adj.)
taking heed; giving close and thoughtful attention;
Synonyms: heedful / attentive / paying attention
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.