9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[skroo-pyuh-luh s] /ˈskru pyə ləs/
having scruples, or moral or ethical standards; having or showing a strict regard for what one considers right; principled:
scrupulous about defending human rights.
punctiliously or minutely careful, precise, or exact:
a scrupulous attention to detail in their performance.
Origin of scrupulous
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin scrūpulōsus. See scruple, -ous
Related forms
[skroo-pyuh-los-i-tee] /ˌskru pyəˈlɒs ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
scrupulousness, noun
scrupulously, adverb
hyperscrupulosity, noun
hyperscrupulous, adjective
hyperscrupulously, adverb
hyperscrupulousness, noun
underscrupulous, adjective
underscrupulously, adverb
1. conscientious, cautious, careful, circumspect. 2. exacting, rigorous. Scrupulous, punctilious imply abiding exactly by rules. Scrupulous implies conscientious carefulness in attending to details: scrupulous attention to details. Punctilious suggests strictness, preciseness, and rigidity, especially in observance of social conventions.
2. careless. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for scrupulous
  • scrupulous fossil collectors are careful always to get permission.
  • The subjects also read about scrupulous coffee drinkers and bookkeepers.
  • The city's sanitized vision turns to vapor and still less scrupulous dwellers take over again.
  • It has also been put together with scrupulous attention to the needs of the non-academic reader.
  • These comparisons are notoriously tricky to deploy in an ethically scrupulous way.
  • The emperor condemned his too scrupulous fears and credulity, and made her ample amends.
  • In his political zeal he was not always scrupulous as to historical accuracy.
  • The familiar essay is easier to write than the short story, but it imposes equal restraints on a scrupulous author.
  • From this experience he acquired a particular talent for curing scrupulous consciences, and a singular light to discern them.
  • One thing about them was conspicuous: their scrupulous neatness.
British Dictionary definitions for scrupulous


characterized by careful observation of what is morally right
very careful or precise
Derived Forms
scrupulously, adverb
scrupulousness, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin scrūpulōsus punctilious
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for scrupulous

mid-15c., from Anglo-French scrupulus, Middle French scrupuleux, or directly from Latin scrupulosus, from scrupulus (see scruple). Related: Scrupulously; scrupulousness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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