Dictionary

careful

adjective care·ful \-fəl\

: using care

: made, done, or said with care

care·ful·lercare·ful·lest

Full Definition of CAREFUL

1
archaic
a :  solicitous, anxious
b :  filling with care or solicitude
2
:  exercising or taking care
3
a :  marked by attentive concern and solicitude
b :  marked by wary caution or prudence <be very careful with knives>
c :  marked by painstaking effort to avoid errors or omissions —often used with of or an infinitive <careful of money> <careful to adjust the machine>
care·ful·ly \-f(ə-)lē\ adverb
care·ful·ness \-fəl-nəs\ noun

Examples of CAREFUL

  1. He is a careful driver.
  2. You can never be too careful about these things.
  3. Be careful! The stove is hot!
  4. She was careful of their feelings.
  5. The police were careful to leave the room exactly as they found it.
  6. Police made a careful examination of the scene.
  7. They produced a careful study of the building.

First Known Use of CAREFUL

before 12th century

Synonym Discussion of CAREFUL

careful, meticulous, scrupulous, punctilious mean showing close attention to detail. careful implies attentiveness and cautiousness in avoiding mistakes <a careful worker>. meticulous may imply either commendable extreme carefulness or a hampering finicky caution over small points <meticulous scholarship>. scrupulous applies to what is proper or fitting or ethical <scrupulous honesty>. punctilious implies minute, even excessive attention to fine points <punctilious observance of ritual>.

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