adjective pre·cious \ˈpre-shəs\

: rare and worth a lot of money

: very valuable or important : too valuable or important to be wasted or used carelessly

: greatly loved, valued, or important

Full Definition of PRECIOUS

:  of great value or high price <precious jewels>
:  highly esteemed or cherished <a precious friend>
:  excessively refined :  affected <precious manners>
:  great, thoroughgoing <a precious scoundrel>
pre·cious·ness noun

Examples of PRECIOUS

  1. diamonds and other precious stones
  2. We can save precious time by taking this shortcut.
  3. They were able to be together for only a few precious hours.
  4. the family's most precious moments
  5. That so many of China's cleverest and most creative men and women had to sell their books and their most precious carvings and family seals to keep themselves alive, while corpulent nationalists and their friends dined well in local banquet halls, gave them some right to schadenfreude. —Simon Winchester, The Man Who Loved China, 2008

Origin of PRECIOUS

Middle English, from Anglo-French precios, from Latin pretiosus, from pretium price — more at price
First Known Use: 13th century


adverb pre·cious \ˈpre-shəs\

: very or extremely

Full Definition of PRECIOUS

:  very, extremely <has precious little to say>

Examples of PRECIOUS

  1. She had precious little to say.
  2. There are precious few hours of sunlight left.

Origin of PRECIOUS

(see 1precious)
First Known Use: 1595
PRECIOUSNESS Defined for Kids


adjective pre·cious \ˈpre-shəs\

Definition of PRECIOUS for Kids

:  very valuable <Diamonds and emeralds are precious stones.>
:  greatly loved or valued <a precious friend> <precious memories>


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