plural précis prā-ˈsēz How to pronounce précis (audio)
: a concise summary of essential points, statements, or facts

Example Sentences

a précis of the book's plot a précis of the bill that the legislature is currently considering
Recent Examples on the Web Here's some of the precis of the PBS documentary: Everyone can tell a Nubian from a Norwegian, so why not divide people into different races? Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 14 Dec. 2010 And Marketplace of the Gods serves as a decent precis of the literature, and its bibliography is well worth perusing. Razib Khan, Discover Magazine, 25 June 2010 Mitchell is not merely giving a precis of an era in Black entertainment and film history — though Is That Black Enough?!? K. Austin Collins, Rolling Stone, 16 Nov. 2022 The English tests included making a 250-word precis of four pages of text, answering questions on extracts from Dickens and Sheridan, and writing an essay on one of the following: Popularity as a test of merit. Hedley Sutton, Quartz India, 19 Aug. 2019 Journalist-historian Jon Meacham offered a more contemplative precis devoid of the inflammatory., 30 June 2017 And this has been merely a precis of acts of actual political violence. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, 16 June 2017 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'précis.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


French, from précis precise

First Known Use

1760, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of précis was in 1760

Dictionary Entries Near précis

Cite this Entry

“Précis.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


pré·​cis prā-ˈsē How to pronounce précis (audio) ˈprā-sē How to pronounce précis (audio)
plural précis -ˈsēz How to pronounce précis (audio)
: a brief summary of the essential points of something
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