Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Strictly and completely in accord with fact; not deviating from truth or reality: an exact account; an exact replica; your exact words.
  • adj. Characterized by accurate measurements or inferences with small margins of error; not approximate: an exact figure; an exact science.
  • adj. Characterized by strict adherence to standards or rules: an exact speaker.
  • transitive v. To force the payment or yielding of; extort: exact tribute from a conquered people.
  • transitive v. To demand and obtain by or as if by force or authority: a harsh leader who exacts obedience. See Synonyms at demand.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Precisely agreeing with a standard, a fact, or the truth; perfectly conforming; neither exceeding nor falling short in any respect.
  • adj. Habitually careful to agree with a standard, a rule, or a promise; accurate; methodical; punctual
  • adj. Precisely or definitely conceived or stated; strict.
  • adj. Such that the kernel of one homomorphism is the image of the preceding one.
  • v. To demand and enforce the payment or performance of.
  • v. To make desirable or necessary.
  • v. To forcibly obtain or produce.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Precisely agreeing with a standard, a fact, or the truth; perfectly conforming; neither exceeding nor falling short in any respect; true; correct; precise
  • adj. Habitually careful to agree with a standard, a rule, or a promise; accurate; methodical; punctual
  • adj. Precisely or definitely conceived or stated; strict.
  • intransitive v. To practice exaction.
  • transitive v. To demand or require authoritatively or peremptorily, as a right; to enforce the payment of, or a yielding of; to compel to yield or to furnish; hence, to wrest, as a fee or reward when none is due; -- followed by from or of before the one subjected to exaction.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To force or compel to be paid or yielded; demand or require authoritatively or menacingly.
  • To demand of right or necessity; enjoin with pressing urgency.
  • To claim; require.
  • Synonyms Exact, Extort, Enforce. Extort is much stronger than exact, and implies more of physical compulsion applied or threatened. Exact and extort apply to something to be got; enforce to something to be done. Enforce expresses more physical and less moral compulsion than extort.
  • To practise exaction.
  • Closely correct or regular; strictly accurate; truly adjusted, adapted, conformable, or the like.
  • Precisely correct or right; real; actual; veritable: as, the exact sum or amount; the exact time; those were his exact words. A statement is exact which does not differ from the true by any quantity, however small. See synonyms under accurate.
  • Methodical; careful; not negligent; observing strict accuracy, method, rule, or order: as, a man exact in keeping appointments; an exact thinker.
  • Characterized by or admitting of exactness or precision; precisely thought out or stated; dealing with definite facts or precise principles: as, an exact demonstration; the exact sciences.
  • Steady; even; well-balanced.
  • In English law, to call (a party) in court to answer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. take as an undesirable consequence of some event or state of affairs
  • adj. (of ideas, images, representations, expressions) characterized by perfect conformity to fact or truth ; strictly correct
  • v. claim as due or just
  • adj. marked by strict and particular and complete accordance with fact

Etymologies

Latin exāctus, past participle of exigere, to weigh out, demand : ex-, ex- + agere, to weigh; see ag- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French, from Medieval Latin exactare, reg., from Latin exactus, perfect passive participle of exigō ("demand, claim as due" or "measure by a standard, weigh, test"), from ex ("out") + agō ("drive"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • definition: exact, v, to demand
    ex: qualms which exacted rites of expiation -- John Dewey

    January 2, 2007