[ pruh-prahy-i-tee ]
/ prəˈpraɪ ɪ ti /

noun, plural pro·pri·e·ties.

conformity to established standards of good or proper behavior or manners.
appropriateness to the purpose or circumstances; suitability.
rightness or justness.
the proprieties, the conventional standards of proper behavior; manners: to observe the proprieties.
Obsolete. a property.
Obsolete. a peculiarity or characteristic of something.

Origin of propriety

1425–75; late Middle English propriete ownership, something owned, one's own nature (compare variant proprete property) < Middle French propriété < Latin proprietās peculiarity, ownership, equivalent to propri(us) proper + -etās, variant, after vowels, of -itās -ity

SYNONYMS FOR propriety

2 aptness, fitness, seemliness.
3 correctness.

Related forms

non·pro·pri·e·ty, noun, plural non·pro·pri·e·ties.

Can be confused

probity propriety Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for propriety

British Dictionary definitions for propriety


/ (prəˈpraɪətɪ) /

noun plural -ties

the quality or state of being appropriate or fitting
conformity to the prevailing standard of behaviour, speech, etc
the proprieties (plural) the standards of behaviour considered correct by polite society

Word Origin for propriety

C15: from Old French propriété, from Latin proprietās a peculiarity, from proprius one's own
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