Definitions

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

  • adj. Presenting the substance in a condensed form; concise: a summary review.
  • adj. Performed speedily and without ceremony: summary justice; a summary rejection.
  • n. A presentation of the substance of a body of material in a condensed form or by reducing it to its main points; an abstract.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Concise, brief or presented in a condensed form
  • adj. Performed speedily and without formal ceremony.
  • adj. Performed by cutting the procedures of a normal trial.
  • n. An abstract or a condensed presentation of the substance of a body of material.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Formed into a sum; summed up; reduced into a narrow compass, or into few words; short; brief; concise; compendious.
  • adj. Hence, rapidly performed; quickly executed.
  • n. A general or comprehensive statement; an abridged account; an abstract, abridgment, or compendium, containing the sum or substance of a fuller account.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Containing the sum or substance only; reduced to few words; short; brief; concise; compendious: as, a summary statement of arguments or objections.
  • Rapidly performed; quickly executed; effected by a short way or method; without hesitation, delay, or formality.
  • Synonyms Succinct, Condensed, etc. (see concise); synoptical, terse, pithy.
  • Prompt, rapid.
  • n. An abridged or condensed statement or account; an abstract, abridgment, or compendium containing the sum or substance of a fuller statement.
  • n. In law, a short application to a court or judge, without the formality of a full proceeding.

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

  • adj. briefly giving the gist of something
  • n. a brief statement that presents the main points in a concise form
  • adj. performed speedily and without formality

Etymologies

Middle English, from Medieval Latin summārius, of or concerning the sum, from Latin summa, sum; see sum1.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
(Adjective) From Medieval Latin summarius, from Latin summa. (Wiktionary)

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