Fretful Fret"ful, a. [See 2d {Fret}.] Disposed to fret; ill-humored; peevish; angry; in a state of vexation; as, a fretful temper. -- {Fret"ful*ly}, adv. -- {Fret"ful*ness}, n.

Syn: Peevish; ill-humored; ill-natured; irritable; waspish; captious; petulant; splenetic; spleeny; passionate; angry.

Usage: {Fretful}, {Peevish}, {Cross}. These words all indicate an unamiable working and expression of temper. Peevish marks more especially the inward spirit: a peevish man is always ready to find fault. Fretful points rather to the outward act, and marks a complaining impatience: sickly children are apt to be fretful. Crossness is peevishness mingled with vexation or anger. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • fretful — index fractious, petulant, querulous, restive Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • fretful — 1590s, from FRET (Cf. fret) (v.) + FUL (Cf. ful). Related: Fretfully …   Etymology dictionary

  • fretful — peevish, *irritable, petulant, querulous, fractious, snappish, waspish, pettish, huffy Analogous words: cross, cranky, touchy, choleric, *irascible: captious, carping, caviling, faultfinding, Critical: Contrary, perverse Contrasted words: patient …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • fretful — [adj] irritable captious, carping*, caviling, complaining, contrary, crabby*, cranky*, critical, cross, crotchety*, edgy, faultfinding, fractious, huffy*, mean, ornery*, out of sorts*, peevish, perverse, petulant, querulous, shorttempered,… …   New thesaurus

  • fretful — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ anxious or irritated. DERIVATIVES fretfully adverb fretfulness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • fretful — [fret′fəl] adj. tending to fret; irritable and discontented; peevish fretfully adv. fretfulness n …   English World dictionary

  • fretful — [[t]fre̱tfʊl[/t]] ADJ GRADED If someone is fretful, they behave in a way that shows that they worried or unhappy about something. Don t assume your baby automatically needs feeding if she s fretful …   English dictionary

  • fretful — adjective a) irritable, bad tempered, grumpy or peevish It was another cry, but not quite like the one she had heard last night; it was only a short one, a fretful, childish whine muffled by passing through walls. b) unable to relax; fidgety or… …   Wiktionary

  • fretful — fret|ful [ˈfretfəl] adj anxious and complaining, and unable to relax ▪ The child was tired and fretful. >fretfully adv >fretfulness n [U] …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • fretful — adjective anxious and complaining, especially about small or unimportant things: The child was tired and fretful. fretfully adverb fretfulness noun (U) …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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