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precision, carelessness, laxity, negligence


Accuracy and Precision, Discipline and Control, Expression and Communication



How to pronounce punctilio (audio)


Dictionary definition of punctilio

A strict adherence to etiquette, codes of conduct, or formalities, often in situations that require precise and meticulous attention to detail.
"The diplomat followed every punctilio when meeting with foreign leaders."

Detailed meaning of punctilio

It implies a strong commitment to observing rules, customs, or protocols with great care and exactitude. Punctilio is closely related to matters of courtesy, politeness, and decorum, where individuals demonstrate their respect and consideration for others by following established norms and procedures. It is not limited to social settings but can also pertain to professional environments where adherence to specific rules and procedures is crucial. In essence, punctilio underscores the importance of maintaining proper decorum and observing social or professional conventions down to the smallest detail, reflecting a commitment to respectful and orderly interactions.

Example sentences containing punctilio

1. The diplomat was known for his strict adherence to punctilio in matters of protocol.
2. The punctilio of etiquette demanded that he offer a formal bow to his host.
3. She meticulously followed the punctilio of proper table manners during the formal dinner.
4. The officer's uniform was adorned with numerous punctilios, signifying his rank and achievements.
5. The CEO was known for his punctilio in punctuality; he was never late for a meeting.
6. The punctilio of dress code required employees to wear formal attire to the corporate event.

History and etymology of punctilio

The noun 'punctilio' has its etymological roots in the Spanish word 'puntillismo,' which means 'pointillism' or 'fine point.' This term was originally used in the context of fencing and referred to the precise and meticulous attention to detail required in the practice of swordplay. It later evolved to signify strict adherence to etiquette, codes of conduct, or formalities, especially in social and ceremonial situations. The notion of paying careful attention to fine points and details remained central to its meaning. 'Punctilio' thus embodies the idea of unwavering commitment to observing even the smallest and most intricate aspects of proper behavior and decorum, making it an apt term to describe situations where precision and adherence to established rules are paramount.

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Further usage examples of punctilio

1. The punctilio of grammar dictated that she carefully proofread her writing for any errors.
2. The punctilio of gift-giving in their culture meant presenting it with both hands and a slight bow.
3. He took offense at the slightest breach of punctilio and demanded an apology.
4. The lawyer's attention to punctilio in legal matters ensured that all documents were accurately prepared.
5. The historical reenactment group meticulously recreated the punctilio of medieval combat.
6. The old-fashioned gentleman held himself with a punctilio that was rarely seen in modern society.
7. The teacher reminded her students about the punctilio of academic honesty and the consequences of plagiarism.
8. The wedding planner paid great attention to the punctilio of seating arrangements for the reception.
9. The strict punctilio of military protocol required the soldiers to salute their superiors.
10. The royal family observed every punctilio of royal protocol during their official state visit.
11. The punctilio of RSVPing to invitations ensured that the hosts could plan accordingly.
12. The conductor demanded punctilio from the orchestra members, insisting on perfect timing and execution.
13. The captain's punctilio in navigation ensured the ship's safe journey through treacherous waters.
14. The etiquette expert wrote a book on the punctilio of social interactions in different cultures.

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