American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. The quality of being proper; appropriateness.
- n. Conformity to prevailing customs and usages.
- n. The usages and customs of polite society.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Peculiar or exclusive right of possession; ownership; possession; property.
- n. That which is proper or peculiar; property; peculiarity.
- n. An estate; a holding.
- n. Suitableness to an acknowledged or correct standard or rule; consonance with established principles, rules, or customs; fitness; justness; correctness.
- n. Individuality; particular or proper state.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. obsolete Individual right to hold property; ownership by personal title; property.
- n. obsolete That which is proper or peculiar; an inherent property or quality; peculiarity.
- n. The quality or state of being proper; suitableness to an acknowledged or correct standard or rule; consonance with established principles, rules, or customs; fitness; appropriateness.
- n. correct or appropriate behavior
- Coined between 1425 and 1475 from late Middle English propriete ("ownership"), from Middle French proprieté, from Latin proprietās (Wiktionary)
- Middle English propriete, particular character, ownership, from Old French; see property. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The passion to know, in the face of censure and propriety, is what advances our understanding of the world.”
“Blogathon actions are unusual, and the best way to ensure propriety is to do it through their system.”
“Now propriety is another matter, a matter of judgment.”
“Victorian propriety is an important element of the story, the atmosphere to be upended over and over by slapstick action and sudden death.”
“The Scotsman reports (here) on how a second SNP Minister has been smelt out for having a large shareholding that, to most people with any sense of propriety, is a clear potential conflict of interest with his position as minister.”
“Its author (possibly Nassau Senior or Southey himself) purports to trace the history of injunctions back to the 18th century, when the Court of Chancery took over issues of literary propriety from the common law courts.”
“His sense of propriety is widely shared: Few gay parties occur in the country during the holy month.”
“It should always have a slight Man Men air about it, and holding itself to outdated standards of propriety is a fine way to accomplish that.”
“I'm just not sure what the propriety is of her being the administration spokesman when no one voted for her.”
“Thoughts may be valuable in themselves, but words are meaningless unless communicated, valuable only in publication -- yet in publication their propriety is lost.”
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