Definition of fearful adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈfɪəfl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈfɪrfl//
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  1. 1(formal) nervous and afraid fearful (for somebody) Parents are ever fearful for their children. fearful (of something/of doing something) fearful of an attack Fearful of continued unrest, the government imposed a state of emergency. fearful (that…) She was fearful that she would fail. See related entries: Nervous
  2. 2[only before noun] (formal) terrible and frightening
  3. 3(old-fashioned, informal) extremely bad We made a fearful mess of the room.
  4. Extra examples I felt fearful for my life. The experience had left her fearful and uncertain. understandably fearful about the future Fearful of an attack, the government declared a state of emergency.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: fearful