Definition of thorough in English:



  • 1Complete with regard to every detail; not superficial or partial.

    ‘planners need a thorough understanding of the subject’
    • ‘The first step is to obtain a thorough history and perform a complete physical examination.’
    • ‘Weatherizing an earthmoving project calls for careful planning, based on thorough knowledge of your site.’
    • ‘The experiences may lead to closer contact and more thorough understanding.’
    • ‘Far from being the pristine oasis of calm portrayed in magazines, my house still looks as if it's been done over by a gang of particularly thorough burglars.’
    • ‘I think our group needs a proper and thorough briefing.’
    • ‘But this is impossible without a thorough grounding in history, both ancient and modem.’
    • ‘A very detailed and thorough selection process was involved.’
    • ‘In addition, medical records must be accurate and thorough because they may become an important element in any legal action.’
    • ‘Each of the essays is long enough to give readers a thorough grounding in the topic being analysed.’
    • ‘The theist who wants to build a systematic and thorough apologetic finds that he is required to begin absolutely from the beginning.’
    • ‘One young physicist, taking his first degree at Oxford University, would have been given a thorough grounding in both great theories.’
    • ‘A thorough and accurate medical history and a review of systems is key to uncovering potential systemic causes of wrist pain.’
    • ‘Professional tests provide more thorough and accurate information and recommendations.’
    • ‘Information is presented in a precise, thorough, conservative, referenced and readable style.’
    • ‘His painstaking, comprehensive and thorough work was distinguished by deep sensitivity and fresh insights.’
    • ‘Prevention only works when you have a thorough understanding about how and why things fail.’
    • ‘Success in this environment requires a thorough understanding of systems theory.’
    • ‘Whenever he was doing something in mathematics, he always strove to achieve a thorough understanding of the subject.’
    • ‘However, dive briefings were very thorough, with emphasis on the safety aspects.’
    • ‘The evaluation begins with a thorough history and a careful physical examination.’
    rigorous, in-depth, exhaustive, thoroughgoing, minute, detailed, close, meticulous, scrupulous, assiduous, conscientious, painstaking, methodical, careful, sedulous, complete, comprehensive, elaborate, full, intensive, extensive, widespread, sweeping, searching, all-embracing, all-inclusive
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    1. 1.1Performed or written with great care and completeness.
      ‘officers have made a thorough examination of the wreckage’
      • ‘Fire investigators have so far been unable to carry out a thorough examination of the building for clues because it is unsafe.’
      • ‘The terms of reference were broad, the processes were inclusive, and the deliberations were thorough.’
      • ‘This is the most thorough examination by divers of the wreck site since 1982.’
      • ‘The Pentagon says that they've done a pretty thorough review of all the tapes.’
      • ‘Scientists carried out an extremely thorough search for without finding any hint of its presence.’
      • ‘Apparently the landlord had done a proper inventory and thorough check-in report, which helped the assessment enormously.’
      • ‘Shotguns are taken out of their safe hiding place and given a thorough cleaning.’
      • ‘Benign and malignant areas may coexist, emphasizing the need for thorough pathologic sampling.’
      • ‘These all appear to be thorough, properly conducted reviews.’
      • ‘Thorough preparation provides the opportunity for success in political races and bilateral negotiations.’
      • ‘The physician also should perform a thorough physical examination of the child, looking for any unusual marks or bruises.’
      • ‘They had already gone through a very thorough review, but now they have to be reviewed again.’
      • ‘An experienced structural engineer performed a thorough examination of the school building.’
      • ‘His research has been thorough and his conclusions accurate.’
      • ‘The baby was brought to hospital for a thorough examination but was found to be unharmed.’
      • ‘Under these circumstances a more thorough investigation would have been more than appropriate.’
      • ‘Glover's historical work, so far as I can judge, is careful and thorough.’
      • ‘She did a thorough literature search and wrote the draft manuscript.’
      • ‘It seems unlikely that everyone engages in thorough deliberation for every decision they make in their relationships.’
      • ‘The sweet-makers took away the small white tablet for examination and promised a thorough investigation.’
      meticulous, scrupulous, assiduous, conscientious, painstaking, punctilious, methodical, careful, attentive, diligent, industrious, persevering, laborious, hard-working
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    2. 1.2Taking pains to do something carefully and completely.
      ‘the British authorities are very thorough’
      • ‘I think that they're going to be extremely thorough.’
      • ‘Choose your weapons carefully, be merciless, be thorough, and take no prisoners!’
      • ‘As a mathematician, Dodgson was rather conservative but certainly thorough and careful.’
      • ‘I'm trying very hard to be careful and thorough, and to present new information and new claims as they become available.’
      • ‘It is a fairly straightforward game where you just have to pay attention and be thorough.’
      • ‘Speaking to a national newspaper, he praised the police, saying they had been extremely thorough.’
      • ‘I just loved working with him; he was so absolutely thorough.’
      • ‘You place great importance on whatever you happen to be interested in, and can be quite thorough and detailed in what you are doing, but find it difficult to be consistent.’
      • ‘It didn't seem to occur to him that it might be possible to be a thorough and fair teacher without denigrating your pupil.’
      • ‘This does not mean that we will catch less - just be thorough and accurate with your groundbaiting and with your casting and the results will come.’
      • ‘Eventually we will know these things, but we must be diligent, thorough, persistent and patient.’
      • ‘Some members of the team may have been particularly thorough with hand washing and used more than one actuation per hand wash.’
      • ‘I can't guarantee that we would have been as thorough under those circumstances.’
      meticulous, scrupulous, assiduous, conscientious, painstaking, punctilious, methodical, careful, attentive, diligent, industrious, persevering, laborious, hard-working
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    3. 1.3British [attributive]Absolute (used to emphasize the degree of something, typically something unwelcome or unpleasant)
      ‘the child is being a thorough nuisance’
      • ‘It is indicative of the thorough mess Britain's farmers are in when a beef crisis tax threatens the livelihood of pork producers.’
      • ‘Mather had excellent support in the back row, with Hills making a thorough nuisance of himself, as every openside should.’
      • ‘It was a fitting tribute to a thorough gentleman, consummate professional and true Celt.’
      utter, downright, thoroughgoing, absolute, complete, total, out-and-out, outright, real, perfect, profound, proper, consummate, all-out, wholesale, surpassing, sheer, rank, pure, unqualified, unmitigated
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Old English thuruh, alteration of thurh ‘through’. Original use was as an adverb and preposition, in senses of through. The adjective dates from the late 15th century, when it also had the sense ‘that goes or extends through something’, surviving in thoroughfare.