1
a
: stringent in requirement or control
under strict orders
b
: severe in discipline
a strict teacher
2
a
: inflexibly maintained or adhered to
strict secrecy
b
: rigorously conforming to principle or a norm or condition
3
: exact, precise
in the strict sense of the word
4
: of narrow erect habit of growth
a strict inflorescence
5
archaic
a
: tight, close
also : intimate
b
: narrow
strictly adverb
strictness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for strict

rigid, rigorous, strict, stringent mean extremely severe or stern.

rigid implies uncompromising inflexibility.

rigid rules of conduct

rigorous implies the imposition of hardship and difficulty.

the rigorous training of recruits

strict emphasizes undeviating conformity to rules, standards, or requirements.

strict enforcement of the law

stringent suggests severe, tight restriction or limitation.

stringent standards of admission

Examples of strict in a Sentence

Her parents aren't very strict. He insists on strict adherence to the rules.
Recent Examples on the Web These major corporations, renowned for their rigorous operational protocols, depend on The Fast Fire Watch Co. for comprehensive fire hazard protection and strict compliance with safety standards. Kyle Russell, Journal Sentinel, 26 Feb. 2024 Compliance should be Rule No. 1 and a strict condition of your engagements, and clients appreciate it. John Pacini, Forbes, 26 Feb. 2024 Is Putin popular in Russia? Truly gauging popular opinion is notoriously difficult in Russia, where the few independent think tanks operate under strict surveillance and where, even in a legitimate survey, many Russians are fearful of criticizing the Kremlin. Rob Picheta, CNN, 25 Feb. 2024 As strict boarding school teacher Paul Hunham, Giamatti has received acclaim, nabbing a Critics’ Choice win, a third Golden Globe as well as BAFTA and Oscar nominations. Brendan Le, Peoplemag, 25 Feb. 2024 Forcing stricter rules for responsible gun owners is unreasonable and infringes on their right to protect themselves. The San Diego Union-Tribune Staff, San Diego Union-Tribune, 24 Feb. 2024 Founded in Baton Rouge, the Raising Cane’s chain is known for maintaining a strict menu focus — just chicken fingers with one signature dipping sauce, crinkle-cut fries, cole slaw and Texas toast. Linda Zavoral, The Mercury News, 23 Feb. 2024 Also Thursday, the Xinjiang government enacted stricter rules governing religious expression, part of a campaign to Sinicize places and forms of worship of the predominantly Muslim Uyghurs. Simina Mistreanu, Detroit Free Press, 23 Feb. 2024 However, the rigorous application process and strict credit requirements can be daunting, especially for new or small-scale eCommerce ventures. William Mullane, The Arizona Republic, 23 Feb. 2024 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Middle English stricte, from Latin strictus, from past participle of stringere to bind tight — more at strain

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 5

Time Traveler
The first known use of strict was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near strict

Cite this Entry

“Strict.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/strict. Accessed 2 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

strict

adjective
1
: permitting no avoidance or escape
under strict orders
2
a
: kept with great care : absolute
strict secrecy
b
: carefully obeying rules or a code of conduct
3
: completely correct : exact, precise
in the strict meaning of the word
strictly adverb
strictness noun

Legal Definition

strict

adjective
1
: characterized by narrowness : not demonstrating a broad or liberal view
strict interpretation
2
a
: firm or rigid in requirement or control
b
: severe in discipline
3
a
: inflexibly maintained or adhered to
b
: rigorously conforming to a principle or norm or condition
a strict bill of interpleader
4
: not requiring fault see also strict liability at liability sense 2b
strictly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on strict

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