precious

[ presh-uhs ]
/ ˈprɛʃ əs /

adjective

noun

a dearly beloved person; darling.

adverb

extremely; very: She wastes precious little time.

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THINK YOU’VE GOT A HANDLE ON THIS US STATE NICKNAME QUIZ?

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Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of precious

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English preciose (from Old French precios), from Latin pretiōsus “costly, valuable,” equivalent to preti(um) “price, value, worth” (see price) + -ōsus-ous

SYNONYMS FOR precious

3 darling, cherished.

synonym study for precious

1. See valuable.

OTHER WORDS FROM precious

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for precious

British Dictionary definitions for precious

precious
/ (ˈprɛʃəs) /

adjective

beloved; dear; cherished
very costly or valuable
held in high esteem, esp in moral or spiritual matters
very fastidious or affected, as in speech, manners, etc
informal worthlessyou and your precious ideas!

adverb

informal (intensifier)there's precious little left

Derived forms of precious

preciously, adverbpreciousness, noun

Word Origin for precious

C13: from Old French precios, from Latin pretiōsus valuable, from pretium price, value
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