pre·​cise | \ pri-ˈsīs How to pronounce precise (audio) \

Definition of precise

1 : exactly or sharply defined or stated
2 : minutely exact
3 : strictly conforming to a pattern, standard, or convention
4 : distinguished from every other at just that precise moment

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Other Words from precise

preciseness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for precise

correct, accurate, exact, precise, nice, right mean conforming to fact, standard, or truth. correct usually implies freedom from fault or error. correct answers socially correct dress accurate implies fidelity to fact or truth attained by exercise of care. an accurate description exact stresses a very strict agreement with fact, standard, or truth. exact measurements precise adds to exact an emphasis on sharpness of definition or delimitation. precise calibration nice stresses great precision and delicacy of adjustment or discrimination. makes nice distinctions right is close to correct but has a stronger positive emphasis on conformity to fact or truth rather than mere absence of error or fault. the right thing to do

Examples of precise in a Sentence

Be sure to take precise measurements before you cut the cloth. The dating of very old materials has become more precise with new instruments. The word has a very precise meaning. Can you find a more precise term than “good” to describe the movie? Could you be a little more precise about what happened? She is very precise in her work.
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Recent Examples on the Web The precise design of the payments had remained fluid as talks on Capitol Hill continued, with lawmakers scrambling to finalize the legislation. Jeff Stein,, "Cash-payments plan sowing division among Republicans," 19 Mar. 2020 Though no precise tallies exist, industry officials described dozens of incidents across the country, often in affluent neighborhoods of such cities as Seattle and New York, where people have withdrawn tens of thousands of dollars at a time. Andrew Ackerman And Orla Mccaffrey, WSJ, "Some Bank Branches Run Low on Cash as Customers Make Big Withdrawals," 18 Mar. 2020 The larger the range, the more precise the sound will be. Gabrielle Hondorp, Popular Mechanics, "The Best Gaming Headsets to Bring Virtual Worlds to Life," 16 Mar. 2020 Huguette was a two-year-old at the time, so the precise circumstances have always been murky to her, but somehow she and Maurice were placed with a peasant family, while their parents found similar refuge nearby. Matt Seaton, The New York Review of Books, "The Righteous Mayor of Vibraye," 12 Mar. 2020 The White House has yet to offer details about who has been invited or the precise agenda for the meeting. Morgan Winsor, ABC News, "Coronavirus live updates: Italy expands lockdown to entire country," 9 Mar. 2020 And when controlling a commercially available prosthesis called the LUKE arm, both participants could move the thumb to precise targets in space and pick up and stack a set of small wooden blocks. Kelly Servick, Science | AAAS, "Minimuscles let amputees control a robot hand with their minds," 4 Mar. 2020 The precise timing of the rain will become clearer Tuesday. Jay R. Jordan, Houston Chronicle, "Warm, sticky today in Houston; Storms pick up Tuesday night," 2 Mar. 2020 Lorena spoke with force and eloquence, her sentences ordered and deliberate, her command of the facts precise. Seth Harp, Harper's magazine, "In Harm’s Way," 2 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'precise.' 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 precise

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for precise

Middle English, from Middle French precis, from Latin praecisus, past participle of praecidere to cut off, from prae- + caedere to cut

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Time Traveler for precise

Time Traveler

The first known use of precise was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

22 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Precise.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Apr. 2020.

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How to pronounce precise (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of precise

: very accurate and exact
used to refer to an exact and particular time, location, etc.
: very careful and exact about the details of something


pre·​cise | \ pri-ˈsīs How to pronounce precise (audio) \

Kids Definition of precise

1 : exactly stated or explained He gave precise instructions.
2 : very exact : accurate The clay for glaze was mixed in precise proportions with water and wood ash.— Linda Sue Park, A Single Shard
3 : being exactly the one mentioned or indicated and no other At that precise moment, the telephone rang.

Other Words from precise

precisely adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on precise

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for precise

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with precise

Spanish Central: Translation of precise

Nglish: Translation of precise for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of precise for Arabic Speakers

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