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[pri-sahys] /prɪˈsaɪs/
definitely or strictly stated, defined, or fixed:
precise directions.
being exactly that and neither more nor less:
a precise temperature; a precise amount.
being just that and no other:
the precise dress she had wanted.
definite or exact in statement, as a person.
carefully distinct:
precise articulation.
exact in measuring, recording, etc.:
a precise instrument.
excessively or rigidly particular:
precise observance of regulations; precise grooming.
Origin of precise
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin praecīsus curtailed, brief, orig. past participle of praecīdere to cut off, cut short, equivalent to prae- pre- + -cīsus, combining form of caesus, past participle of caedere to cut
Related forms
precisely, adverb
preciseness, noun
overprecise, adjective
overprecisely, adverb
overpreciseness, noun
superprecise, adjective
superprecisely, adverb
superpreciseness, noun
ultraprecise, adjective
unprecise, adjective
unprecisely, adverb
unpreciseness, noun
Can be confused
précis, precise.
1. explicit.
1. indefinite, vague.
Synonym Study
1. See correct. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for preciseness
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He spoke English with the preciseness of an educated foreigner.

    The Heads of Apex Francis Flagg
  • But this preciseness did not extend to the younger Alexander's choice of subjects.

  • The most graceful principle of dress is neatness—the most vulgar is preciseness.

    Pelham, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • Summersby took his hand; it was dry and had a preciseness about its grip that irritated him.

    The Enormous Room Horace Leonard Gold
  • He would be struck with the preciseness, the correct air of the man.

    English Costume

    Dion Clayton Calthrop
  • The room into which we entered was a wonder for preciseness and order.

  • This attention to your religious duties need not be attended by any preciseness or austerity of manner.

  • Towards the end of September the Duke committed himself with preciseness to the opinion that one years delay was necessary.

    Lord Randolph Churchill Winston Spencer Churchill
  • Critical studies of classic authors do not usually give any preciseness about the exact niche the subject fills.

    Gilbert Keith Chesterton

    Patrick Braybrooke
British Dictionary definitions for preciseness


strictly correct in amount or value: a precise sum
designating a certain thing and no other; particular: this precise location
using or operating with total accuracy: precise instruments
strict in observance of rules, standards, etc: a precise mind
Derived Forms
preciseness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from French précis, from Latin praecīdere to curtail, from prae before + caedere to cut
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
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Word Origin and History for preciseness

"precision," 1560s, from precise + -ness.



mid-15c., from Middle French précis "condensed, cut short" (14c.) and directly from Medieval Latin precisus, from Latin praecisus "abrupt, abridged, cut off," past participle of praecidere "to cut off, shorten," from prae "before" (see pre-) + caedere "to cut" (see -cide; for Latin vowel change, see acquisition). Related: Precisely (late 14c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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