caution

noun
cau·​tion | \ ˈkȯ-shən How to pronounce caution (audio) \

Definition of caution

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : warning, admonishment Her comments were intended as a caution to us to protect our property.
2 : precaution a surgeon taking the caution of sterilizing his instruments
3 : prudent forethought to minimize risk Use caution when operating a chain saw.
4 : one that astonishes or commands attention some shoes you see … these days are a cautionEsquire

caution

verb
cautioned; cautioning\ ˈkȯ-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce caution (audio) \

Definition of caution (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to advise caution to : warn She cautioned him not to act rashly.

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Other Words from caution

Noun

cautionary \ ˈkȯ-​shə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce caution (audio) , -​ne-​rē \ adjective

Examples of caution in a Sentence

Noun You should use caution when operating the electric saw. He injected a note of caution in his talk. Her financial adviser urged caution before investing in the project. The roads are slippery: drive with extreme caution. Her comments were intended as a caution to us to protect our property. A note of caution: be sure that the electricity is off before you install the ceiling fan. She was given a caution by the magistrate. Verb Officials are cautioning that the war may continue for years. “Don't decide too quickly,” she cautioned. He was cautioned for speeding.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Christian faithful across the globe sat scattered in pews Sunday while many stuck to homes out of caution or under restrictions. Editors, USA TODAY, "Here's the biggest news you missed this weekend," 5 Apr. 2021 Classes were canceled Monday out of caution, and the district initially planned for schools to return as normal Tuesday, the district said in a Facebook post. Brianna Kwasnik, Arkansas Online, "Rose Bud schools reopen after threats," 31 Mar. 2021 One word of caution: be ready if the conversation gets emotional. Usha Lee Mcfarling, STAT, "A user’s guide: How to talk to those hesitant about the Covid-19 vaccine," 29 Mar. 2021 But Fauci has continued to urge caution among parents, even those who have already been vaccinated, as children are not yet eligible for the coronavirus vaccine. Michael Lee, Washington Examiner, "Fauci warns vaccinated parents that children should still wear masks around each other," 28 Mar. 2021 And now, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, all of these things have had to be put through an extra degree of caution. Miguel Torres, The Arizona Republic, "Phoenix area's Jewish community bands together to help those in isolation celebrate Passover," 26 Mar. 2021 The state’s indoor dining restrictions have also eased up, even as health experts continue to urge caution and restaurant workers await vaccination. BostonGlobe.com, "When we all gather again in restaurants, we will do so changed," 20 Mar. 2021 Vaccine rollouts and warmer spring temperatures have prompted some states to lift mask mandates and loosen guidelines, but health experts continue to urge caution for young athletes amid the spread of possibly more contagious variants of the virus. New York Times, "Despite Covid Outbreaks, Youth Sports Played On," 13 Mar. 2021 Amid optimism over the vaccine rollout, health officials continue to urge caution, saying California can ill afford to let its guard down and risk another resurgence of a disease that has already killed more than 55,000 people statewide. Luke Money, Los Angeles Times, "California hits target of 2 million vaccines in low-income areas, clearing way for wider reopenings," 12 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But supply-chain experts caution that multinational manufacturers frequently game the audit process. New York Times, "Global Brands Find It Hard to Untangle Themselves From Xinjiang Cotton," 6 Apr. 2021 But experts caution that a vaccine cleared for emergency use is still experimental and the final testing must be completed. Joe Taschler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Pleasant Prairie site will play role in Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine distribution as UK approves vaccine's use," 6 Apr. 2021 But experts caution that even statistical tests designed to single out prejudice may not prove accurate — even if there is evidence to suggest that bias exists. Lyndsay Winkley, San Diego Union-Tribune, "The Color of Authority: San Diego police, sheriff’s deputies disproportionately target minorities, data show," 28 Mar. 2021 Yet some medical ethics experts caution that this system could reward those who are better equipped to track down leftover vaccine instead of prioritizing those most in need of protection. Chicago Tribune Staff, chicagotribune.com, "Daywatch: People receive leftover COVID-19 vaccines, Madigan’s departure speeds up shift in Chicago politics and MSI reopens with new Marvel exhibit," 5 Mar. 2021 But experts caution that a vaccine cleared for emergency use is still experimental and the final testing must be completed. Lauran Neergaard, Anchorage Daily News, "Britain authorizes Pfizer coronavirus vaccine for emergency use," 2 Dec. 2020 But experts caution that Biden will be careful not to make changes that could attract a new wave of migrants. Fox News, "Punishing hurricanes to spur more Central American migration," 25 Nov. 2020 But experts caution that a handful of our closest living relatives in the animal kingdom are also in jeopardy from SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Paul Nicolaus, National Geographic, "Endangered primates face high risk of catching COVID-19," 23 Nov. 2020 But many experts caution that that experience has limited relevance to high-transmission regions today. Gretchen Vogel, Science | AAAS, "As COVID-19 soars in many communities, schools attempt to find ways through the crisis," 18 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'caution.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of caution

Noun

1566, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1683, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for caution

Noun

Latin caution-, cautio precaution, from cavēre to be on one's guard — more at hear

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Time Traveler for caution

Time Traveler

The first known use of caution was in 1566

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Statistics for caution

Last Updated

8 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Caution.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/caution. Accessed 13 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for caution

caution

noun

English Language Learners Definition of caution

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: care taken to avoid danger or risk : a careful attitude or way of behaving
: a warning telling someone to be careful
British, law : a spoken official warning given to someone who has done something illegal but has not committed a serious crime

caution

verb

English Language Learners Definition of caution (Entry 2 of 2)

: to warn or tell (someone) about a possible danger, problem, etc.
British, law : to give a caution to (someone)

caution

noun
cau·​tion | \ ˈkȯ-shən How to pronounce caution (audio) \

Kids Definition of caution

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : care taken to avoid trouble or danger : precaution They approached the dog with caution.
2 : warning a word of caution

caution

verb
cautioned; cautioning

Kids Definition of caution (Entry 2 of 2)

: to warn about danger

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Comments on caution

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