Word of the Month: pretty

Shana Goodwin, August 2, 2021



Pleasing or attractive in a graceful or delicate way. Example: The floral design on that shirt is so pretty!


To a fair degree; moderately. Example: Ciara has pretty good English.


To make pretty. Example: My mother prettied up the house before my grandmother arrived.

Pretty is also used in the idiom pretty much, which means: for the most part; mostly. Example: I have pretty much finished my homework.

Pretty is a pretty common word in English, because it has an adjective, adverb, and verb form. You will most often hear it being used in its adverb form, where it means “moderately,” or “quite.” Note that it is different from very or so, which are used to emphasize or intensify the word that follows. For example, you would say: “I am very tired” or “I am so tired” when you are exhausted, and “I am pretty tired” when quite tired but not super tired.

Listen to a native speaker say pretty: