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From Middle English nicetee, from Old French niceté (simpleness, foolishness), from nice (simple, foolish); see nice.


nicety (plural niceties)

  1. A small detail or distinction.
    We met the new captain while we were taking enemy fire and were unable to observe the niceties of formal introductions.
    • John Locke
      the fineness and niceties of words
  2. Subtlety or precision of use.
    A rocket-propelled grenade doesn't have the nicety of a sniper round, but you must admit its effectiveness.

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