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3 definitions found
 for painful
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Painful \Pain"ful\, a.
     1. Full of pain; causing uneasiness or distress, either
        physical or mental; afflictive; disquieting; distressing.
        --Addison.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. Requiring labor or toil; difficult; executed with
        laborious effort; as a painful service; a painful march.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     3. Painstaking; careful; industrious. [Obs.] --Fuller.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              A very painful person, and a great clerk. --Jer.
                                                    Taylor.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              Nor must the painful husbandman be tired. --Dryden.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     Syn: Disquieting; troublesome; afflictive; distressing;
          grievous; laborious; toilsome; difficult; arduous.
          [1913 Webster] -- Pain"ful*ly, adv. --
          Pain"ful*ness, n.
          [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  painful
      adj 1: causing physical or psychological pain; "worked with
             painful slowness" [ant: painless]
      2: causing misery or pain or distress; "it was a sore trial to
         him"; "the painful process of growing up" [syn: afflictive,
         painful, sore]
      3: exceptionally bad or displeasing; "atrocious taste";
         "abominable workmanship"; "an awful voice"; "dreadful
         manners"; "a painful performance"; "terrible handwriting";
         "an unspeakable odor came sweeping into the room" [syn:
         atrocious, abominable, awful, dreadful, painful,
         terrible, unspeakable]
      4: causing physical discomfort; "bites of black flies are more
         than irritating; they can be very painful" [syn:
         irritating, painful]

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  140 Moby Thesaurus words for "painful":
     Herculean, aching, achy, acute, affecting, afflictive, aggravating,
     agonizing, algetic, annoying, arduous, assiduous, atrocious,
     backbreaking, besetting, biting, bitter, bleak, bothersome,
     burdensome, burning, careful, cheerless, comfortless,
     conscientious, cramping, cruel, crushing, demanding, deplorable,
     depressing, depressive, detailed, diligent, discomforting, dismal,
     dismaying, disquieting, distasteful, distressful, distressing,
     disturbing, dolorific, dolorogenic, dolorous, dreary, earnest,
     effortful, exacting, exasperating, excruciating, forced, galling,
     gnawing, grave, grievous, griping, grueling, harassing, hard,
     hard-earned, hard-fought, harrowing, harsh, heavy, hefty, hurtful,
     hurting, irksome, irritating, joyless, killing, labored, laborious,
     lamentable, meticulous, mournful, moving, onerous, operose,
     oppressive, painstaking, paroxysmal, pathetic, piercing, piteous,
     pitiable, plaguey, poignant, pungent, punishing, racking, raw,
     regrettable, rigorous, rueful, sad, saddening, scrupulous,
     sedulous, sensitive, severe, sharp, shooting, smarting, sore,
     sorrowful, spasmatic, spasmic, spasmodic, stabbing, stinging,
     strained, strenuous, tender, thorough, thoroughgoing, throbbing,
     toilsome, tormenting, torturous, touching, tough, troublesome,
     troubling, trying, unappetizing, uncomfortable, unpalatable,
     unpleasant, unsavory, uphill, vexatious, vexing, wearisome,
     woebegone, woeful, worrisome, worrying, wretched
  
  

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