\ ˈstrikt How to pronounce strict (audio) \

Definition of strict

1a : stringent in requirement or control under strict orders
b : severe in discipline a strict teacher
2a : 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

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Other Words from strict

strictly \ ˈstrik(t)-​lē How to pronounce strict (audio) \ adverb
strictness \ ˈstrik(t)-​nəs How to pronounce strict (audio) \ 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 India placed the country under a strict lockdown for several months last spring, which lifted before the September peak. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "India was in crisis months ago. Why have its Covid cases plummeted?," 24 Feb. 2021 The rate of infection in the Bay Area is slowing and ICU capacity is expanding, with 12 percent of the city’s ICU beds vacant as of Sunday evening, but San Francisco and the region remain under strict lockdown orders. Chronicle Staff, San Francisco Chronicle, "Coronavirus news from the Bay Area: Jan. 21-27, 2021," 6 Feb. 2021 California officials released the Greater Sacramento region from strict stay-at-home orders this week, even though the 13-county area falls far short of the state’s benchmark of at least 15% ICU availability. Chronicle Staff,, "Coronavirus news from the Bay Area: Jan. 14-20," 21 Jan. 2021 Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers slammed politicians who implemented and supported strict lockdown orders but were caught breaking their own rules. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "Aaron Rodgers slams Pelosi and Newsom for breaking own coronavirus rules while small businesses suffer," 18 Jan. 2021 He was given strict orders to remain in New York City and refrain from communicating with potential co-conspirators. Anchorage Daily News, "Justice Department investigating potential sedition, conspiracy, terror charges against rioters," 12 Jan. 2021 California, in contrast, has issued strict stay-at-home orders in recent weeks in areas where ICU occupancy has reached 85%. Arkansas Online, "'Like a bathtub filling up': Alabama is slammed by the virus," 30 Dec. 2020 Even though residents have been under strict stay-at-home orders, hospitals have been flooded with the largest crush of cases since the pandemic began. Editors, USA TODAY, "Measure to increase stimulus checks, Boeing 737 Max to return to skies: 5 things to know Tuesday," 29 Dec. 2020 Los Angeles County in California is currently under strict stay-at-home orders with daily deaths up nearly 600%, as well as new COVID-19 cases up 965% since November. Carter Evans, CBS News, "Hospitals in crisis amid record number of coronavirus patients," 29 Dec. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 5

History and Etymology for strict

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

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Time Traveler for strict

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for strict

Last Updated

28 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Strict.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for strict



English Language Learners Definition of strict

used to describe a command, rule, etc., that must be obeyed
: demanding that people obey rules or behave in a certain way
: carefully obeying the rules or principles of a religion or a particular way of life


\ ˈstrikt How to pronounce strict (audio) \
stricter; strictest

Kids Definition of strict

1 : not to be avoided or ignored : requiring obedience strict orders
2 : strongly enforcing rules and discipline a strict coach
3 : kept with great care : absolute strict secrecy
4 : carefully observing something (as a rule or principle) a strict vegetarian
5 : exact entry 1, precise the strict sense of a word

Other Words from strict

strictly adverb
strictness noun



Legal Definition of strict

1 : characterized by narrowness : not demonstrating a broad or liberal view strict interpretation
2a : firm or rigid in requirement or control
b : severe in discipline
3a : 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

Other Words from strict

strictly adverb

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