American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Causing disgust or shock; horrifying.
- adj. Causing fright; terrifying.
- adj. Informal Excessive; extreme: a frightful liar.
- adj. Informal Disagreeable; distressing: frightful weather.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Full of occasion for fright; causing or apt to excite alarm or terror; terrible; dreadful: as, a frightful chasm; a frightful tempest.
- Intolerable; shocking; hideous.
- Full of terror; fearful; alarmed.
- Synonyms Dreadful, Fearful, etc. (see awful); alarming, terrific, horrible, shocking.
- adj. obsolete : Full of fright; affrighted; frightened.
- adj. Full of that which causes fright; exciting alarm; impressing terror; shocking; as, a frightful chasm, or tempest; a frightful appearance.
- adj. Used as an intensifier
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. obsolete Full of fright; affrighted; frightened.
- adj. Full of that which causes fright; exciting alarm; impressing terror; shocking.
- adj. extreme in degree or extent or amount or impact
- adj. provoking horror
- adj. extremely distressing
- From Middle English frightful ("afraid"), from Old English forhtful ("fainthearted, timorous"), equivalent to fright + -ful. (Wiktionary)
“Costumed Tastoanes in frightful masks battle Saint James in a ritual dance each year on July 25th.”
“His eyes were bright and glassy, and their expression frightful to look upon.”
“Some are suspended to the vaulted roof by chains, and in frightful-looking positions; others are on the perpendicular walls.”
“Had a revolutionary change not taken place in our country, our situation now and in the years ahead would have been terrible, and we can understand perfectly that the situation in the years ahead will be terrible in countries which still find themselves in the situation Cuba was in, and even worse: millions of illiterates, a lack of technicians, a shortage of schools, a scarcity of educational and health facilities -- in short, frightful conditions that are well known to Cubans who were familiar with our own past here in all its aspects.”
“We've seen some pretty middling horrible things already, and if these two men of ours call the frightful things we have seen normal, and are planning on deliberately hunting up things that even they will consider monstrous, you and I most certainly shall stay at home! ”
“M. Anciot, and describes as a frightful old hunchback.”
“Van Helsing had not intended to recall her frightful experience.”
“No one who recalls the frightful provisions of the penal acts of”
“Do not we who go about our business in the brilliance of the morning sometimes linger to recall the frightful setting of the sun?”
“Only too clearly he remembered the first time he and Beatrice had been thrust into this weird community, bound and captive; with only too vivid distinctness he recalled the frightful indignities, perils and hardships inflicted on them.”
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