Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Seemingly effortless beauty or charm of movement, form, or proportion.
  • n. A characteristic or quality pleasing for its charm or refinement.
  • n. A sense of fitness or propriety.
  • n. A disposition to be generous or helpful; goodwill.
  • n. Mercy; clemency.
  • n. A favor rendered by one who need not do so; indulgence.
  • n. A temporary immunity or exemption; a reprieve.
  • n. Greek & Roman Mythology Three sister goddesses, known in Greek mythology as Aglaia, Euphrosyne, and Thalia, who dispense charm and beauty.
  • n. Divine love and protection bestowed freely on people.
  • n. The state of being protected or sanctified by the favor of God.
  • n. An excellence or power granted by God.
  • n. A short prayer of blessing or thanksgiving said before or after a meal.
  • n. Used with His, Her, or Your as a title and form of address for a duke, duchess, or archbishop.
  • n. Music An appoggiatura, trill, or other musical ornanment in the music of 16th and 17th century England.
  • transitive v. To honor or favor: You grace our table with your presence.
  • transitive v. To give beauty, elegance, or charm to.
  • transitive v. Music To embellish with grace notes.
  • idiom in the bad graces of Out of favor with.
  • idiom in the good graces of In favor with.
  • idiom with bad grace In a grudging manner.
  • idiom with good grace In a willing manner.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Elegant movement; poise or balance.
  • n. Free and undeserved favour, especially of God. Unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification.
  • n. Divine assistance in resisting sin.
  • n. Short prayer of thanks before or after a meal.
  • n. An allowance of time granted for a debtor during which he is free of at least part of his normal obligations towards the creditor.
  • v. To adorn; to decorate; to embellish and dignify.
  • v. To dignify or raise by an act of favour; to honour.
  • v. To supply with heavenly grace.
  • v. To add grace notes, cadenzas, etc., to.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The exercise of love, kindness, mercy, favor; disposition to benefit or serve another; favor bestowed or privilege conferred.
  • n. The divine favor toward man; the mercy of God, as distinguished from His justice; also, any benefits His mercy imparts; divine love or pardon; a state of acceptance with God; enjoyment of the divine favor.
  • n.
  • n. The prerogative of mercy execised by the executive, as pardon.
  • n. The same prerogative when exercised in the form of equitable relief through chancery.
  • n. Fortune; luck; -- used commonly with hard or sorry when it means misfortune.
  • n. Inherent excellence; any endowment or characteristic fitted to win favor or confer pleasure or benefit.
  • n. Beauty, physical, intellectual, or moral; loveliness; commonly, easy elegance of manners; perfection of form.
  • n. Graceful and beautiful females, sister goddesses, represented by ancient writers as the attendants sometimes of Apollo but oftener of Venus. They were commonly mentioned as three in number; namely, Aglaia, Euphrosyne, and Thalia, and were regarded as the inspirers of the qualities which give attractiveness to wisdom, love, and social intercourse.
  • n. The title of a duke, a duchess, or an archbishop, and formerly of the king of England.
  • n. Thanks.
  • n. A petition for grace; a blessing asked, or thanks rendered, before or after a meal.
  • n. Ornamental notes or short passages, either introduced by the performer, or indicated by the composer, in which case the notation signs are called grace notes, appeggiaturas, turns, etc.
  • n. An act, vote, or decree of the government of the institution; a degree or privilege conferred by such vote or decree.
  • n. A play designed to promote or display grace of motion. It consists in throwing a small hoop from one player to another, by means of two sticks in the hands of each. Called also grace hoop or hoops.
  • transitive v. To adorn; to decorate; to embellish and dignify.
  • transitive v. To dignify or raise by an act of favor; to honor.
  • transitive v. To supply with heavenly grace.
  • transitive v. To add grace notes, cadenzas, etc., to.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. That element or quality of form, manner, movement, carriage, deportment, language, etc., which renders it pleasing or agreeable; elegance or beauty of form, outline, manner, motion, or act; pleasing harmony or appropriateness; that quality in a thing or an act which charms or delights: as, to move with easy grace.
  • n. plural [capitalized] In classical mythology, the goddesses of the beauty, brightness, and joy in nature and humanity. The Graces are the Charites of the Greeks, variously described as daughters of Helios (the Sun) and Aigle (heavenly brightness), or of Zeus (Jupiter) and Eurynome (daughter of Ocean —the Aurora). They were also variously named, but their most familiar names are Aglaϊa(the brilliant), Euphrosyne(cheerfulness), and Thalia (the bloom of life). They had in their gift grace, loveliness, and favor, and were attendants in the train of Aphrodite.
  • n. Amenity of disposition or manner; sweetness or amiability; graciousness; politeness; courtesy; civility: as, to yield with good grace.
  • n. plural A kind of play or game designed to exhibit or develop easy gracefulness in motion. One player, by means of two sticks held one in each hand. throws a small hoop to another, who endeavors to catch it on two similar sticks, and then to throw it back in the same way.
  • n. A pleasing and attractive quality or endowment; beauty; adornment; embellishment.
  • n. In music, an embellishment, whether vocal or instrumental, not essential to the harmony or melody of a piece, such as an appoggiatura, a trill, a turn, etc. Such embellishments were much more common in music for the harpsichord and the viol than they are for modern instruments; their exact form and even the place of their introduction were often left in the eighteenth century to the taste of the performer.
  • n. Favor; good will; friendship; favorable disposition to another; favorable regard: as, to be in one′ s good graces; to reign by the grace of God.
  • n. An act of kindness or favor accorded to or bestowed on another; a good turn or service freely rendered.
  • n. A faculty, license, or dispensation bestowed by legal authority, the granting of which rests in discretion or favor, and is not to be asked as of right; a privilege; also, in English law, a general and free pardon by act of Parliament. Also called act of grace.
  • n. In Scrip, and theology: The free, unmerited love and favor of God: as, the doctrine of grace (that is, the doctrine that all things, including salvation, are received from God as a free gift, and not merited or earned by man).
  • n. The enjoyment of the favor of God.
  • n. Benefit, especially inward spiritual gifts, conferred by God through Christ Jesus; specifically, power or disposition to yield obedience to the divine laws, to practise the Christian virtues, and to bear trouble or affliction with patience and resignation: as, grace to perform a duty, or to bear up under an affliction.
  • n. Virtue; power; efficacy.
  • n. Share of favor allotted to one; lot; fortune; luck.
  • n. Mercy; pardon.
  • n. Indulgence; forbearance; allowance of time: as, three days′ grace for the payment of a note.
  • n. In English universities, an act, vote, or decree of the government of the institution: as, a grace was approved by the Senate at Cambridge for founding a Chinese professorship.
  • n. Thanks; thanksgiving.
  • n. A formula of words expressing thanks and craving a blessing on or with a meal or refreshment; a short prayer before or after meals, in which a blessing is asked or thanks are rendered: as, to say grace; grace before meat.
  • n. A title of honor formerly borne by the sovereigns of England, but now used only as a ceremonious title in speaking to or of a duke, a duchess, or an archbishop: as, his Grace the Duke of Wellington.
  • n. The period.beyond the fixed day for payment allowed by law or custom for paying a note or bill of exchange. In Great Britain and the united States, at common law, three days are allowed; but if the last day of grace falls on Sunday, or any day on which business is not legally carried on, the bill or note is payable on the day preceding. Modern statutes have made some changes in these rules, particularly as regards legal holidays immediately preceding or following Sunday. Bankers′ checks are payable on demand without days of grace, and the same rule applies to bills or notes payable on demand.
  • To adorn; decorate; embellish and dignify; lend or add grace to.
  • To confer grace or favor upon; afford pleasure or gratification to.
  • To dignify or gratify by an act of favor; favor or honor (with something).
  • To supply with heavenly grace.
  • In music, to add grace-notes, cadenzas, etc., to: as, to grace a melody.
  • n. A bow or courtesy.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a sense of propriety and consideration for others
  • v. make more attractive by adding ornament, colour, etc.
  • n. a disposition to kindness and compassion
  • v. be beautiful to look at
  • n. (Greek mythology) one of three sisters who were the givers of beauty and charm; a favorite subject for sculptors
  • n. (Christian theology) a state of sanctification by God; the state of one who is under such divine influence
  • n. elegance and beauty of movement or expression
  • n. a short prayer of thanks before a meal
  • n. (Christian theology) the free and unmerited favor or beneficence of God

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin grātia, from grātus, pleasing.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English grace, from Old French grace (Modern French grâce), from Latin grātia "kindness, favour, esteem", from grātus ‘pleasing’ from Proto-Indo-European *gwer- (“to praise, welcome”). Compare grateful. Displaced native Middle English held, hield "grace" (from Old English held, hyld "grace"), Middle English este "grace, favour, pleasure" (from Old English ēste "grace, kindness, favour"), Middle English athmede(n) "grace" (from Old English ēadmēdu "grace"), Middle English are, ore "grace, mercy, honour" (from Old English ār "grace, kindness, mercy"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Excellent visuals! Thanks, fbharjo!

    August 6, 2011

  • Creation is composed of the descending movement of gravity, the ascending movement of grace and the descending movement of the second degree of grace Simone Weil

    March 23, 2010

  • Thank you this is very good.

    November 25, 2009

  • to give freely

    July 22, 2009

  • ...also a song by U2...

    February 9, 2008