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cautious

[kaw-shuh s]
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adjective
  1. showing, using, or characterized by caution: a cautious man; To be cautious is often to show wisdom.

Origin of cautious

First recorded in 1630–40; cauti(on) + -ous
Related formscau·tious·ly, adverbcau·tious·ness, nounhy·per·cau·tious, adjectivehy·per·cau·tious·ly, adverbhy·per·cau·tious·ness, nounsu·per·cau·tious, adjectiveul·tra·cau·tious, adjectiveul·tra·cau·tious·ly, adverbul·tra·cau·tious·ness, nounun·cau·tious, adjectiveun·cau·tious·ly, adverbun·cau·tious·ness, noun

Synonyms

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prudent, guarded, wary, chary, circumspect, watchful, vigilant.

Synonym study

See careful.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for cautious

cautious

adjective
  1. showing or having caution; wary; prudent
Derived Formscautiously, adverbcautiousness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for cautious

adj.

1640s, from caution + -ous. The Latin word for this was cautus "careful, heedful." Related: Cautiously; cautiousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper