precept

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English[edit]

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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Vulgar Latin praeceptum, form of praecipere (to teach), from Latin prae (pre-) + capere (take).

Noun[edit]

precept (plural precepts)

  1. A rule or principle, especially one governing personal conduct.
    • 2006: Theodore Dalrymple, The Gift of Language
      • I need hardly point out that Pinker doesn't really believe anything of what he writes, at least if example is stronger evidence of belief than precept.
    • 1891: (Can we date this quote?) Susan Hale, Mexico, volume 27, The Story of the Nations, London: T. Fisher Unwin, page 80:
      • He found a people in the extreme of barbarism living in caves, feeding upon the bloody flesh of animals they killed in hunting; he taught them many things, so that by his example, and for generations after he left them by his precepts, they advanced to high civilization.
  2. (law) A written command, especially a demand for payment.

Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

precept (third-person singular simple present precepts, present participle precepting, simple past and past participle precepted)

  1. (obsolete) To teach by precepts.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Francis Bacon to this entry?)

Anagrams[edit]


Old Irish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Vulgar Latin praeceptum, form of praecipere (to teach), from Latin prae (pre-) + capere (take).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /ˈpʲrʲeɡʲept/

Noun[edit]

precept f (genitive precepte)

  1. preaching, teaching
    • c. 800, Würzburg Glosses on the Pauline Epistles, Wb. 21c19
      Is oc precept soscéli at·tó.
      I am preaching the gospel.

Usage notes[edit]

Functions as a verbal noun of a verb with no finite forms.

Mutation[edit]

Old Irish mutation
Radical Lenition Nasalization
precept phrecept precept
pronounced with /b(ʲ)-/
Note: Some of these forms may be hypothetical. Not every
possible mutated form of every word actually occurs.