Origin of discreet
Can be confuseddiscreet discrete
Discrete, “apart or detached from others; separate; distinct,” was originally a spelling doublet of discreet, sharing meanings and both deriving from the same Latin source. The spelling discrete is closer in form to Latin discrētus and is probably an attempt to differentiate discreet from discrete.
The Middle English Dictionary has two senses at the headword discrēt(e): the sense “wise, morally discerning, prudent, circumspect” has 29 citations; the sense “separate, distinct” has four (in angelology, astronomy, and mathematics).
It wasn’t until the late 16th century that discrete became restricted to its present meanings, leaving the spelling discreet to predominate in its own current uses.
Examples from the Web for discreetly
The traffic agent was kind enough to direct Sarah discreetly to a closed-off street running behind the arena.
Still, Samore added that on two occasions the Russians had discreetly warned Assad about using the weapons.Obama’s Plan B for Securing Assad’s Chemical Weapons|Eli Lake|September 23, 2013|DAILY BEAST
"Correa has been discreetly making gestures to come closer to Western powers," Palacio says.Ecuador Needs U.S. Aid. Will They Risk It All with Snowden?|Mac Margolis|June 26, 2013|DAILY BEAST
So far Elisabeth has managed to discreetly distance herself from the train crash at the newspapers.
Readers who might feel shame about their predilection for tawdry paperbacks can now enjoy them discreetly.How ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ Is Shaking Up the Business of the Romance Genre|Chris Berube|June 6, 2012|DAILY BEAST
Van Buren discreetly lightened up some of the diplomatic pages with passages very agreeable to Jackson.Martin Van Buren|Edward M. Shepard
He was a shrewd observer, and had drawn his own conclusions, but discreetly kept them to himself.Marguerite De Roberval|T. G. Marquis
Traps were set, and poisoned meat was discreetly put out, but only the coyotes suffered, apparently.Motor Matt's Clue|Stanley R. Matthews
Discreetly the good woman nodded, her eyes never leaving the face of the preacher who was beginning his sermon.Sisters|Grace May North
Wong had been doing some work on the fence, but had discreetly vanished when Lowell came in sight.Mystery Ranch|Arthur Chapman