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Handful vs. Handfull — Which is Correct Spelling?

By Tayyaba Rehman & Fiza Rafique — Updated on March 19, 2024
The correct spelling is "Handful," referring to a small quantity or number. "Handfull" is an incorrect spelling.
Handful vs. Handfull — Which is Correct Spelling?

Which is correct: Handful or Handfull

How to spell Handful?


Correct Spelling


Incorrect Spelling

Key Differences

Think of 'handful' as 'hand' + 'ful,' following the rule that 'full' often becomes 'ful' in compound words.
Remember that "handful" is a "full hand," not a "fulll hand."
"Full" becomes "ful" when it is part of a compound word like "handful."
Visualize a hand holding something to remember that you only need one 'l' to hold it all.
Consider that the word "hand" ends in 'd,' and the next letter is 'f,' so there is no need to repeat the 'l.'

How Do You Spell Handfull Correctly?

Incorrect: She found a handfull of shells on the beach.
Correct: She found a handful of shells on the beach.
Incorrect: He had a handfull of coins in his pocket.
Correct: He had a handful of coins in his pocket.
Incorrect: A handfull of people attended the meeting.
Correct: A handful of people attended the meeting.
Incorrect: The child held a handfull of candy tightly.
Correct: The child held a handful of candy tightly.
Incorrect: He needed only a handfull of flour for the recipe.
Correct: He needed only a handful of flour for the recipe.

Handful Definitions

An amount that can be held in one hand.
She picked up a handful of sand.
A person or thing that is difficult to manage.
The toddler was a real handful.
A descriptive term indicating minimal resources or support.
He managed the project with just a handful of staff.
A tiny portion of a larger population.
A handful of rebels resisted the army.
The amount that a hand can hold.
A small, undefined number or quantity
Only a handful of people on the street.
(Informal) One that is difficult to control or handle
The hyperactive toddler is a real handful.
The amount that a hand will grasp or contain.
Passage=I put two or three corns in my mouth, liked it, stole a handful, went into my chamber, chewed it, and for two months after never failed taking toll of every pennyworth of oatmeal that came into the house
(obsolete) A hand's breadth; four inches.
A small number, usually approximately five.
A group or number of things; a bunch.
(informal) Something which can only be managed with difficulty.
Those twins are a real handful to look after.
(slang) A five-year prison sentence.
As much as the hand will grasp or contain.
A hand's breadth; four inches.
Knap the tongs together about a handful from the bottom.
A small quantity or number.
This handful of men were tied to very hard duty.
A person, task, or situation, which is the most that one can manage; as, my two-year-old is a handful.
They had their handful to defend themselves from firing.
A small number or amount;
Only a handful of responses were received
The quantity that can be held in the hand

Handful Meaning in a Sentence

He threw a handful of rice at the newlyweds.
She grabbed a handful of popcorn from the bowl.
The puppy was a handful, always getting into mischief.
A handful of friends gathered to celebrate her birthday.
With a handful of ingredients, he made a delicious meal.
A handful of confetti was thrown into the air in celebration.
A handful of almonds is a healthy snack.
She kept a handful of her favorite photos in a small box.
Only a handful of students were selected for the program.
The magician pulled out a handful of coins from behind a child's ear.
She could manage only a handful of tasks each day.
A handful of dedicated volunteers helped clean up the beach.
A handful of moments later, the decision was made.
They found a handful of old coins in the attic.
The book contained a handful of illustrations.
He picked up a handful of sand and let it slip through his fingers.
A handful of people stood in line waiting for the store to open.
The artist used only a handful of colors to create a stunning painting.
He offered a handful of seeds to the birds in the park.
She had a handful of opportunities to prove her talent.
The teacher had her hands full with a handful of energetic students.
With only a handful of clues, the detective solved the case.
Only a handful of people know the secret recipe.
He had only a handful of change after buying the ticket.
The garden was planted with a handful of flower seeds.

Handful Idioms & Phrases

Catch a handful

To grab or capture a small amount of something.
The children tried to catch a handful of snowflakes.

A good handful

A quantity that fills the hand; something substantial.
He picked a good handful of berries from the bush.

Worth a handful of silver

Something of value or worth.
The old watch was worth a handful of silver to the collector.

A handful of dust

A symbol of something insignificant or transient.
All these material possessions will one day be just a handful of dust.

A handful of hope

A small but significant amount of hope.
Even in dark times, she held onto a handful of hope.

Spend a handful

To use or spend a small amount of something, usually money.
She only spent a handful of dollars at the thrift store.

Throw a handful

To scatter a small quantity of something.
They threw a handful of flower petals as the bride walked down the aisle.

Save a handful

To reserve or save a small portion.
He saved a handful of his favorite cookies for later.

A handful

A small number or amount.
Only a handful of people can fit in the elevator at one time.

A handful of silence

A brief period of quiet or silence.
The room fell into a handful of silence before the verdict was announced.

A handful of courage

A small but sufficient amount of bravery.
It took a handful of courage for him to stand up to the bully.

A handful of memories

A small collection of cherished memories.
Looking through the photo album, she revisited a handful of memories from her childhood.

Earn a handful

To receive a small but significant reward.
After hours of hard work, he felt he had earned a handful of rest.

A handful of dreams

A few cherished aspirations or desires.
She moved to the city with a suitcase and a handful of dreams.

A handful of words

A brief conversation or a few chosen words.
They exchanged a handful of words before parting ways.

A handful of earth

A small amount of soil, symbolizing connection to land or a modest beginning.
He started his garden with just a handful of earth and a few seeds.

A handful of tears

A small amount of crying or tears, often due to joy or relief.
Upon hearing the good news, she shed a handful of tears.

A handful of laughter

A small but genuine outburst of laughter.
The joke earned a handful of laughter from the crowd.

A handful of stars

A poetic way of describing a few visible stars in the sky.
That night, only a handful of stars could be seen through the city lights.

Common Curiosities

What is the root word of Handful?

"Hand" and "Full" are the root components.

What is the pronunciation of Handful?


Which vowel is used before Handful?

Any vowel could be used depending on the preceding word.

What is the verb form of Handful?

There isn't a verb form for "handful."

Why is it called Handful?

Because it refers to an amount that can fit into one's hand.

Which conjunction is used with Handful?

"And" or "or" can be used depending on the context.

Which article is used with Handful?

"A" or "the" can be used.

Is Handful a noun or adjective?

It's primarily a noun.

Is Handful a negative or positive word?

Neutral, the connotation depends on the context.

Is Handful a vowel or consonant?

It's a word containing both vowels and consonants.

Is Handful a countable noun?


Is the Handful term a metaphor?

It can be used metaphorically.

Is the word Handful imperative?


What is the singular form of Handful?


Is the word Handful a gerund?


How do we divide Handful into syllables?


What is another term for Handful?

Small quantity, few.

What is the plural form of Handful?


Which preposition is used with Handful?

"Of" is commonly used.

Is the word “Handful” a Direct object or an Indirect object?

It can serve as a direct object.

How many syllables are in Handful?

Two syllables.

Is Handful an adverb?


Is Handful an abstract noun?

No, it's a concrete noun.

Is Handful a collective noun?


What is a stressed syllable in Handful?

The first syllable, "Hand," is stressed.

What part of speech is Handful?

It's a noun.

What is the opposite of Handful?

Abundance, many.

Which determiner is used with Handful?

"A" or "the" depending on the context.

How is Handful used in a sentence?

"She had a handful of flowers."

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.
Co-written by
Fiza Rafique
Fiza Rafique is a skilled content writer at, where she meticulously refines and enhances written pieces. Drawing from her vast editorial expertise, Fiza ensures clarity, accuracy, and precision in every article. Passionate about language, she continually seeks to elevate the quality of content for readers worldwide.

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