noun pro·pri·e·ty \prə-ˈprī-ə-tē\

: behavior that is accepted as socially or morally correct and proper

: the state or quality of being correct and proper

proprieties : rules of correct social behavior

plural pro·pri·e·ties

Full Definition of PROPRIETY

obsolete :  true nature
obsolete :  a special characteristic :  peculiarity
:  the quality or state of being proper or suitable :  appropriateness
a :  conformity to what is socially acceptable in conduct or speech
b :  fear of offending against conventional rules of behavior especially between the sexes
c plural :  the customs and manners of polite society

Examples of PROPRIETY

  1. She conducted herself with propriety.
  2. They debated the propriety of the punishment that he was given.
  3. When attending a wedding, there are certain proprieties that must be observed.
  4. If Madison felt the same annoyance with the dissenters, his prim sense of political propriety forbade him from stooping to personal attacks. —Jack N. Rakove, Original Meanings …, 1996


Middle English propriete, from Anglo-French proprieté, propreté property, quality of a person or thing — more at property
First Known Use: 14th century

Rhymes with PROPRIETY


Next Word in the Dictionary: proprioceptionPrevious Word in the Dictionary: proprietressAll Words Near: propriety
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