Definition of precisely in US English:



  • 1In exact terms; without vagueness.

    ‘the guidelines are precisely defined’
    • ‘There was a time when a coach could define precisely the role of every position on the field.’
    • ‘An enormous effort will be put into analysing and debating the detail of who precisely said what to whom, and when they did so.’
    • ‘After precisely one not-very-calm minute of straining myself in this position I decide to move.’
    • ‘They would stay for precisely 120 minutes, and when they left, the fate of the village would be sealed.’
    • ‘What precisely is this new system going to be for examining such a dismissal?’
    • ‘It is agreed by the parties that each Lease contained precisely the same terms.’
    • ‘It's hard to define precisely, and even bands within this genre shy away from giving it an exact title.’
    • ‘It was much more insidious precisely because it was not defined in terms of what he did or did not do.’
    • ‘Instead it provided an elaborate scheme for defining precisely who should be eligible for assistance.’
    • ‘So far today, in the space of nearly four and a half hours, I have managed precisely ten minutes work.’
    • ‘Hours later she was able to tell them, in grim, upsetting detail, precisely what she had done.’
    • ‘We don't know enough details yet to know precisely how that piece fits into the puzzle.’
    • ‘I do tend to rule out France and Germany precisely because their systems cost a fortune.’
    • ‘The problem, we hear, is defining precisely what an investment actually is in this context.’
    • ‘Your registered title should precisely define what you do and do not own and what other rights of access you may have.’
    exhaustively, painstakingly, systematically, meticulously, rigorously, scrupulously, punctiliously, in detail
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    1. 1.1 Exactly (used to emphasize the complete accuracy or truth of a statement)
      ‘at 2:00 precisely, the phone rang’
      ‘kids will love it precisely because it will irritate their parents’
      • ‘Whether or not the percentage is precisely accurate does not matter.’
      • ‘To his horror, they began to dig in the sand, precisely where the dead had been buried two years ago.’
      • ‘So although the Chair may be saying to come back to the bill, it is precisely why that issue is directly relevant.’
      • ‘It is precisely when we need the truth and power of this Word of God that it is hardest to believe it.’
      • ‘To repeat a defamatory statement was precisely the same as if one had said it in the first place.’
      • ‘Do you make it a habit to see that each shrub is facing precisely in the direction it should be?’
      • ‘In the UK this is precisely the reason that pay-as-you-go phones became so huge.’
      • ‘In other words, the directive will have precisely the opposite effect to that intended.’
      • ‘But the truth is that it is precisely the spirit of Oxford and London which is needed now.’
      • ‘Edging shears must be razor sharp and held at precisely 90° to the lawn edge.’
      • ‘I can identify the moment I fell out of love with India quite precisely.’
      • ‘A large part of the work of the Safer York Partnership has been directed toward achieving precisely that.’
      • ‘The director allows her to die in the film precisely at that point when she begins to doubt her own convictions.’
      • ‘It is of course precisely that these directly affect the domestic policies of states which makes them significant.’
      • ‘The proposal for a single national scheme heads precisely in the other direction.’
      • ‘The appeals tribunal promptly heard the evidence and came to precisely the same conclusion.’
      exactly, sharp, on the dot
      exactly, absolutely, just, in all respects, in every way, entirely, altogether
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    2. 1.2 Used as a reply to assert emphatic agreement with or confirmation of a statement.
      ‘“You mean it was a conspiracy?” “Precisely.”’
      yes, exactly, quite, absolutely, right, that's right, just so, quite so, indubitably, without a doubt, definitely
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