From kindly +‎ -ness.


kindliness (countable and uncountable, plural kindlinesses)

  1. The state of feeling kindly towards someone or something, or the actions inspired thereby.
    Elmo looked upon his only granddaughter with kindliness, and often relented to her demands for chocolate.
    • 1561, Thomas Norton, The Tragedie of Gorboduc, London: William Griffith, 1565, Act I, Scene 1,[1]
      A father: no:
      In kynde a Father, but not in kyndlynes.
    • 1774, Henry Home, Lord Kames, Sketches of the History of Man, Edinburgh: A. Strahan & T. Cadell, 1788, Volume 3, Sketch 10, Public Police with respect to the Poor, pp. 98-99,[2]
      Creatures loathsome by disease or nastiness, affect the air in a poor-house; and have little chance for life, without more care and kindliness than can be expected from servants, rendered callous by continual scenes of misery.
    • 1888, Thomas Hardy, “The Withered Arm,” Chapter 2,[3]
      The dairyman, who rented the cows of Lodge, and knew perfectly the tall milkmaid's history, with manly kindliness always kept the gossip in the cow-barton from annoying Rhoda.
    • 1924, H. G. Wells, The Dream, Part One, Chapter 4, §1,[4]
      Suddenly I forgot the bickerings of my uncle and brother and was overcome with tenderness and grief for my father. A rush from my memory of many clumsy kindlinesses, a realisation of the loss of his companionship came to me.
    • 1936, Margaret Mitchell, Gone with the Wind, Part One, Chapter 2,[5]
      “It’s lying you are!” said Gerald, and then, peering at her stricken face, he added in a burst of kindliness: “I’m sorry, daughter. But after all, you are nothing but a child and there’s lots of other beaux.”
  2. (archaic) Favourableness; mildness.
    • 1683, Roger Bacon, The Cure of Old Age, and Preservation of Youth, translated by Richard Browne, London: Tho. Flesher & Edward Evets, Chapter 16, p. 137,[6]
      To the end that Kindliness of Nature may endure, chafing with Oyl in a moderate Quantity and Quality is very good for Men of decrepit Age, and for those that are growing Old.
    • 1798, Edward Hasted, The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent, Canterbury: W. Bristow, 2nd edition, Volume 6, “Newington,” p. 42,[7]
      [] great part of it [] was formerly planted with orchards of apples, cherries, and other kind of fruit, but these falling to decay, and the high price of hops yielding a more advantageous return, many of them were displanted, and hops raised in their stead, the scite of an old orchard, being particularly adapted for the purpose, which, with the kindliness of the soil for that plant, produced large crops of it []
    • 1803, The Farmer’s Magazine, Edinburgh: Archibald Constable, Volume 4, No. 15, August 1803, Review of agricultural publications, “General View of the Agriculture of the Counties of Roxburgh and Selkirk,” p. 318,[8]
      The one third of the sheep kept are of the short-bodied, black-faced, coarse-wooled kinds; which our author justly celebrates, as highly adapted for coarser pasture, from their hardiness and superior kindliness in feeding.
    • 1805, James Hamilton, Observations on the Utility and Administration of Purgative Medicines in Several Diseases, Edinburgh: James Simpson, Chapter 2, p. 26,[9]
      Scarlatina, as an epidemic, does not always assume precisely the same appearance. This diversity depends in part, upon the varying nature and constitution of scarlatina itself, independently of all extrinsic circumstances; in part, upon certain contingencies, which are common to all the inhabitants of a whole district of country, such as the season of the year, the temperature of the air, the kindliness or inclemency of the weather [] and partly, upon circumstances which apply to individuals, subjected to the disease []
  3. (obsolete) Naturalness.




See alsoEdit