June 28, 2013
precipitous (adjective)
\prih-SIP-uh-tus\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
1 : showing unwise and unnecessary haste : rash2 : steep like a precipice
How do you use it?
"Falling rocks from the upper precipitous part of the ridge were also a source of danger, as they came whizzing past in successive volleys . . ." (John Muir, _Steep Trails_)
Are you a word wiz?

Without being rash about it, tell us which word you think is a synonym of "precipitous."

"Precipitous," "sheer," "steep," and "abrupt" mean having a nearly upright slope. "Steep" implies such sharpness of pitch that going up or down is very difficult, as in "The bikers labored to climb the steep hill." "Precipitous" applies to a slope so steep that it is almost vertical, as in "The river winds through a precipitous gorge." "Sheer" suggests an unbroken perpendicular expanse, as in "The sheer cliffs daunted even the most experienced climbers." "Abrupt" implies a sharp pitch and a sudden break in the level, as in "The storm left the beach with an abrupt drop-off."
Archive RSS Feed