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[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 scrupulously
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Nicholas Longworth was neither an enlightened nor a public-spirited man; but, like most of his race, he was scrupulously honest.

  • I was scrupulously careful not to do so, for I did imagine something like what has happened.

    Questionable Shapes William Dean Howells
  • Everything that once belonged to Bridau was scrupulously preserved.

    The Two Brothers Honore de Balzac
  • Dwellings will be artistic, æsthetic and scrupulously clean.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • Everything is scrupulously clean, and the cattle women are working hard all the long daylight hours.

    Peeps at Many Lands: Norway A.F. Mockler-Ferryman
British Dictionary definitions for scrupulously


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 scrupulously



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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