Word of the Day


audio pronunciation
July 04, 2015
: tight, constricted
: marked by rigor, strictness, or severity
: marked by money scarcity and credit strictness
Brandon and Sarah had to adjust to living on a stringent budget during the four months when Brandon was looking for a job.

"In an effort to address the perils of climate change, the county supervisors voted 3–2 to adopt the most stringent greenhouse-gas-emission restrictions of any county in California…." — Nick Welsh, Santa Barbara (California) Independent, May 21, 2015
Get the Word of the Day direct to your inbox — subscribe today!
Did You Know?
Words that are synonymous with stringent include rigid, which implies uncompromising inflexibility ("rigid rules of conduct"), and rigorous, which suggests hardship and difficulty ("the rigorous training of firefighters"). Also closely related is strict, which emphasizes undeviating conformity to rules, standards, or requirements ("strict enforcement of the law"). Stringent usually involves severe, tight restrictions or limitations ("the college has stringent admissions rules"). That's logical. After all, rigorous and rigid are both derived from rigēre, the Latin word meaning "to be stiff," and stringent and strict developed from the Latin verb stringere, meaning "to bind tight."

Word Family Quiz: Fill in the blanks to create a verb related to Latin stringere ("to bind tight") that means "to compel to satisfy an obligation by means of distress": _ i _ tr _ _ n. The answer is …
More Words of the Day
Visit our archives to see previous selections.
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears