proper

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See also: pro per

English[edit]

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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Anglo-Norman proper, propre, Old French propre (French: propre), and their source, Latin proprius.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

proper (comparative more proper, superlative most proper)

  1. Suitable.
    1. Suited or acceptable to the purpose or circumstances; fit, suitable. [from 13th c.]
      the proper time to plant potatoes
      • Alexander Pope
        The proper study of mankind is man.
    2. Following the established standards of behavior or manners; correct or decorous. [from 18th c.]
      a very proper young lady
  2. Possessed, related.
    1. (grammar) Used to designate a particular person, place, or thing. Proper words are usually written with an initial capital letter. [from 14th c.]
    2. Pertaining exclusively to a specific thing or person; particular. [from 14th c.]
      • 1621, Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy, II.1.3:
        They have a proper saint almost for every peculiar infirmity: for poison, gouts, agues []
      • Coleridge
        those high and peculiar attributes [] which constitute our proper humanity
    3. (archaic) Belonging to oneself or itself; own. [from 14th c.]
      • Shakespeare
        my proper son
      • Dryden
        Now learn the difference, at your proper cost, / Betwixt true valour and an empty boast.
      • 1621, Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy, II.4.1.ii:
        every country, and more than that, every private place, hath his proper remedies growing in it, particular almost to the domineering and most frequent maladies of it.
      • 1946, Bertrand Russell, History of Western Philosophy, I.20:
        Each animal has its proper pleasure, and the proper pleasure of man is connected with reason.
    4. (heraldry) Portrayed in natural or usual coloration, as opposed to conventional tinctures. [from 16th c.]
    5. (mathematics, physics) Eigen-; designating a function or value which is an eigenfunction or eigenvalue. [from 20th c.]
  3. Accurate, strictly applied.
    1. Excellent, of high quality; such as the specific person or thing should ideally be. (Now often merged with later senses.) [from 14th c.]
      Now that was a proper breakfast.
    2. (now regional) Attractive, elegant. [from 14th c.]
      • 1526, William Tyndale, trans. Bible, Acts VII:
        The same tyme was Moses borne, and was a propper [transl. ἀστεῖος (asteios)] childe in the sight of God, which was norisshed up in his fathers housse thre monethes.
    3. In the very strictest sense of the word (now often as postmodifier). [from 14th c.]
      • 1922, James Joyce, Ulysses, Episode 16:
        Though unusual in the Dublin area he knew that it was not by any means unknown for desperadoes who had next to nothing to live on to be abroad waylaying and generally terrorising peaceable pedestrians by placing a pistol at their head in some secluded spot outside the city proper [...].
    4. (now colloquial) Utter, complete. [from 15th c.]
      When I realized I was wearing my shirt inside out, I felt a proper fool.

Synonyms[edit]

Antonyms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

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See also[edit]

Adverb[edit]

proper (not comparable)

  1. (Scotland) properly; thoroughly; completely
    • 1964, Saint Andrew Society (Glasgow, Scotland), The Scots magazine: Volume 82
      Don't you think you must have looked proper daft?
  2. (nonstandard, slang) properly
    • 2012, Soufside, Hello (song)
      When I meet a bad chick, know I gotta tell her hello
      talk real proper, but she straight up out the ghetto

Statistics[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


Catalan[edit]

Adjective[edit]

proper m (feminine propera, masculine plural propers, feminine plural properes)

  1. near, close
  2. neighbouring
  3. next

Synonyms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


Danish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From French propre (clean, house-trained, own), from Latin proprius (own).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /proːbər/, [ˈpʰʁ̥oːˀb̥ɐ]

Adjective[edit]

proper (neuter propert, definite and plural propre)

  1. cleanly
  2. tidy

Derived terms[edit]


Dutch[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /ˈpro.pər/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: pro‧per

Adjective[edit]

proper (comparative properder, superlative properst)

  1. (chiefly Flemish) clean

Declension[edit]


German[edit]

Adjective[edit]

proper

  1. clean

Old French[edit]

Adjective[edit]

proper m, f

  1. (rare) Alternative form of propre.
    • Or a mai entendez Ki proper volunté amez, Set Pechez 70