extremely attentive to punctilios; strict or exact in the observance of the formalities or amenities of conduct or actions.

Nearby words

  1. punctate keratoderma,
  2. punctatim,
  3. punctation,
  4. punctiform,
  5. punctilio,
  6. punctual,
  7. punctuality,
  8. punctually,
  9. punctuate,
  10. punctuated equilibrium

Origin of punctilious

First recorded in 1625–35; punctili(o) + -ous

Related forms
Can be confusedpunctilious punctual

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

Examples from the Web for punctilious

British Dictionary definitions for punctilious



paying scrupulous attention to correctness in etiquette
attentive to detail
Derived Formspunctiliously, adverbpunctiliousness, 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 punctilious



1630s, probably from Italian puntiglioso, from puntiglio "fine point," from Latin punctum "prick" (see point (n.)). Related: Punctiliously; punctiliousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper