Questions about example sentences with, and the definition and usage of "Prodigal"

The meaning of "Prodigal" in various phrases and sentences

Q: What does prodigal mean?
A: Someone who spends money very freely or unwisely.

It's not a common word. We mostly know it from "the prodigal son", a Bible story in which a father shows equal kindness to a son who is wise and obedient and a son who is not. So if someone is described as "a prodigal son" it means someone who is welcomed back despite behaving badly.

Sometimes people confuse it with "prodigious" which means "amazing" or "fantastic".

Example sentences using "Prodigal"

Q: Please show me example sentences with prodigal.
A: It means someone who has a lot of money and spends money without thinking. For example the Prodigal Son is a story of the son of a wealthy father.

Synonyms of "Prodigal" and their differences

Q: What is the difference between prodigal and extravagant ?
A: “Prodigal” does mean extravagant! They are synonyms. But because of the Jesus’s parable of “The prodigal son” in the Bible, many people think “prodigal” means “disobedient,” so that word is rarely used in conversation. (And even when it is used, it is often to make a connection with the story of the prodigal son.)

It is best to stick with “extravagant.”
Q: What is the difference between prodigal and profligate ?
A: i don’t think (2) is correct ... (1) is correct, and “profligate” can also be used as a noun, whereas prodigal is strictly an adjective (i believe)

... so you’re aware, both of these words are extremely rare in contemporary spoken english

Meanings and usages of similar words and phrases

Latest words


HiNative is a platform for users to exchange their knowledge about different languages and cultures. We cannot guarantee that every answer is 100% accurate.

Newest Questions
Topic Questions
Recommended Questions