What is the difference between - respected - respectable - respectful

my school book tells the difference but i can't understand it from the book because it is embarrassing.

  • I'm curious, why is it "embarrassing"? Do you mean that it would embarrass you to ask for help from the teacher? Or that the example used in the book makes you embarrassed?
    – Andrew
    Jun 9, 2019 at 13:23
  • It is what in the book Jun 9, 2019 at 14:21

1 Answer 1


It can be helpful to check English-language dictionaries for the definitions of words:

respected (adj): Deeply admired or esteemed.

respectable (adj): 1, Regarded by society to be good, proper, or correct. 1.1 (of a person's appearance, clothes, or behaviour) decent or presentable.

respectful (adj): Feeling or showing deference and respect.

So someone "respected" is someone who gets respect from other people:

Her father was the only doctor in the small town, and respected by everyone.

Someone "respectable" appears to deserve respect, or at least, normally engages in the kind of behavior that other people respect.

He was a respectable old gentleman who everyone greeted as he took his evening walk around the town square.

Someone "respectful" shows respect to other people

The respectful young man took off his hat as he approached the doctor during one of his walks. "Sir," he began, "I'm a medical student at the university, and I'd like to ask to become your assistant."

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