From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search



From punctilio (fine point in exactness of conduct) +‎ -ous.


  • IPA(key): /pʌŋkˈtɪli.əs/
    • (file)


punctilious (comparative more punctilious, superlative most punctilious)

  1. Strictly attentive to detail; meticulous or fastidious, particularly to codes or conventions.
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:meticulous
    With a punctilious slap of the gloves, the duel was now inevitable.
  2. Precise or scrupulous; finicky or nitpicky.
    Synonyms: finicky, nitpicky, precise; see also Thesaurus:meticulous
    • 2009, Ronnie Cann, Ruth Kempson, Eleni Gregoromichelaki, Semantics: an introduction to meaning in language:
      Of course, humans do not treat time in such a punctilious fashion.
    • 2017, Kory Stamper, Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries, Pantheon Books, page 103:
      Every editor at Merriam-Webster deals with the Black Books at many points during their tenure. The Black Books are the in-house set of rules for writing a dictionary (commonly called a style guide) as conceived and written in punctilious detail by the former editor in chief Philip Babcock Gove, for the creation of Webster’s Third.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


Further reading[edit]