[peynz-tey-king, peyn-stey-]


taking or characterized by taking pains or trouble; expending or showing diligent care and effort; careful: a painstaking craftsman; painstaking research.


careful and diligent effort.

Origin of painstaking

First recorded in 1550–60; pain + -s3 + taking
Related formspains·tak·ing·ly, adverbpains·tak·ing·ness, noun

Synonyms for painstaking

Synonym study

1. Painstaking, careful, meticulous, conscientious all describe persons or behavior demonstrating attention to detail and effective task performance. painstaking stresses diligent and assiduous attention to detail in achieving a desired objective: a painstaking technician; the painstaking editing of a manuscript. Careful , the most general in sense of these words, implies serious intent to perform well and accurately whatever task one has in hand: a careful housepainter; a careful study of the social structure of gangs. Meticulous suggests extreme attention to details, especially the most minute, coupled with an almost obsessive desire to avoid error: a meticulous silversmith, every detail finished to perfection; fussily meticulous about matching shoes and clothing. Conscientious stresses scrupulous effort to obey one's sense of moral obligation to perform tasks well: a conscientious public defender; a conscientious description of the robbery. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for painstakingly

Contemporary Examples of painstakingly

Historical Examples of painstakingly

  • Hoddan painstakingly fastened his bag to the saddle of the lead horse.

    The Pirates of Ersatz

    Murray Leinster

  • Then he painstakingly pushed in the locking-stud with his other hand.

    The Pirates of Ersatz

    Murray Leinster

  • Beyond that, he set himself down seriously and painstakingly to win her.

    To Love

    Margaret Peterson

  • Well, Sandy took her home and read her painstakingly and thoughtfully.

    Dear Enemy

    Jean Webster

  • Painstakingly, the two of them went over the checking circuits.

    The Bramble Bush

    Gordon Randall Garrett

British Dictionary definitions for painstakingly



extremely careful, esp as to fine detailpainstaking research
Derived Formspainstakingly, adverbpainstakingness, 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 painstakingly


1550s (n.), 1690s (adj.), paynes taking, from plural of pain (n.) + present participle of take (v.). Related: Painstakingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper