American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. The quality of being discreet; circumspection. See Synonyms at prudence.
- n. Ability or power to decide responsibly.
- n. Freedom to act or judge on one's own: All the decisions were left to our discretion.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Separation; disjunction.
- n. The quality of being discreet; nice discernment and judgment, directed by circumspection, and primarily regarding one's own conduct; prudence; sagacity; circumspection; wariness; caution.
- n. Liberty or power of acting without other control than one's own judgment; independent determination: as, he is left to his own discretion; it is at your discretion to go or to stay.
- n. In law, that part of the judicial power which depends, not upon the application of rules of law or the determination of questions of strict right, but upon personal judgment to be exercised in view of the circumstances of each case, and which therefore is not usually reviewed by an appellate tribunal, unless abused. Thus, the question how many witnesses a party may call to testify to one and the same fact rests in discretion, but the question whether a particular witness is competent does not.
- n. At the mercy of an antagonist or enemy Thus, to surrender at discretion is to surrender without terms.
- n. Synonyms Prudence, Providence, etc. See wisdom and prudence.
- n. The quality of being discreet or circumspect
- n. The ability to make wise choices or decisions
- n. The freedom to make one's own judgements
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. obsolete Disjunction; separation.
- n. The quality of being discreet; wise conduct and management; cautious discernment, especially as to matters of propriety and self-control; prudence; circumspection; wariness.
- n. Discrimination.
- n. Freedom to act according to one's own judgment; unrestrained exercise of choice or will.
- n. knowing how to avoid embarrassment or distress
- n. the power of making free choices unconstrained by external agencies
- n. freedom to act or judge on one's own
- n. the trait of judging wisely and objectively
- n. refined taste; tact.
“This has come about because the word discretion is an unword in police management-officers are regarded as no more than units of production to fulfill the business plan regardless of the consequences.”
“It was true geatlemen had seemed willing to allow them what they called discretion; but. il was such a soil of discretion as a criminal wight be said Id tiave, who was told he might choose this or that posture of suffering, but that he must die.”
“Understanding -- or, "discretion," is a constant source of blessing”
“In the name of discretion, I was formal, deliberate, guarded.”
“I think that discretion is the better part of valor on this one, Ms. K.”
“Viewer discretion is definitely advised Apparently this ad is creating a bit of a kerfuffle ....”
““Due to mature subject matter,” the emphatic deep-sea voice warns at the start of each episode, “viewer discretion is advised.””
“I debated whether to point out these 'other ways' or not, but decided discretion is the better part of blah blah blah and opted not to.”
“Sounds surprising, but at the insular world of the Supreme Court, discretion is almost a way of life.”
“(Maybe cowardice too, via the “discretion is the better part of valor” principle.)”
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