/nuy"si tee/, n., pl. niceties.
1. a delicate or fine point; punctilio: niceties of protocol.
2. a fine distinction; subtlety; detail: the niceties of the filigree work.
3. Usually, niceties. a refined, elegant, or choice feature, as of manner or living: working hard to acquire the niceties of life.
4. exactness or precision.
5. the quality of being nice; niceness.
6. delicacy of character, as of something requiring care or tact: a matter of considerable nicety.
[1275-1325; ME: silliness, extravagance, cleverness < OF niceté. See NICE, -TY]

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Universalium. 2010.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Nicety — Ni ce*ty, n.; pl. {Niceties}. [OE. nicet[ e] foolishness.] 1. The quality or state of being nice (in any of the senses of that word.). [1913 Webster] The miller smiled of her nicety. Chaucer. [1913 Webster] 2. Delicacy or exactness of perception; …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • nicety — ► NOUN (pl. niceties) 1) a fine detail or distinction. 2) accuracy. 3) a detail of etiquette. ● to a nicety Cf. ↑to a nicety …   English terms dictionary

  • nicety — (n.) mid 14c., folly, stupidity, from O.Fr. niceté foolishness, childishness, simplicity, from nice silly (see NICE (Cf. nice)). Underwent sense evolution parallel to nice, arriving at minute, subtle point 1580s and exactitude in 1650s. Phrase to …   Etymology dictionary

  • nicety — [nī′sə tē] n. pl. niceties [ME nicete < OFr, folly < nice: see NICE] 1. the quality or state of being nice; specif., a) scrupulosity b) precision; accuracy; exactness, as of discrimination or perception c) fastidiousness; refinement;… …   English World dictionary

  • nicety — index decorum, discretion (quality of being discreet), nuance, specification Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • nicety — is pronounced niy si ti, as three syllables. Its primary meaning is ‘a subtle distinction or detail’ whereas niceness corresponds more generally to the meanings of nice …   Modern English usage

  • nicety — [n] fine point detail, exactness, fine distinction, meticulousness, nuance, precision, refinement, rigor, rigorousness, shade, subtlety; concept 638 …   New thesaurus

  • nicety — ni|ce|ty [ˈnaısıti] n plural niceties 1.) [C usually plural] a small detail or point of difference, especially one that is usually considered to be part of the correct way of doing something ▪ social niceties ▪ legal niceties nicety of ▪ the… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • nicety — UK [ˈnaɪsətɪ] / US noun Word forms nicety : singular nicety plural niceties 1) [uncountable] a way of behaving that people consider to be correct 2) [countable] a very small difference or detail …   English dictionary

  • nicety — /ˈnaɪsəti / (say nuysuhtee) noun (plural niceties) 1. a delicate or fine point: *Seward courteously advising Sir John Dean Paul on the niceties of forging and uttering, the lesser practitioners listening and learning in awe. –cyril pearl, 1959. 2 …   Australian English dictionary

  • nicety — n. (pl. ies) 1 a subtle distinction or detail. 2 precision, accuracy. 3 intricate or subtle quality (a point of great nicety). 4 (in pl.) a minutiae; fine details. b refinements, trimmings. Phrases and idioms: to a nicety with exactness.… …   Useful english dictionary

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