alertness and prudence in a hazardous situation; care; wariness: Landslides ahead—proceed with caution.
a warning against danger or evil; anything serving as a warning: By way of caution, he told me the difficulties I would face.
Informal. a person or thing that astonishes or causes mild apprehension: She's a caution. The way he challenges your remarks is a caution.
verb (used with object)
to give warning to; advise or urge to take heed.
verb (used without object)
to warn or advise: The newspapers caution against overoptimism.

1250–1300; Middle English caucion < Latin cautiōn- (stem of cautiō) a taking care, equivalent to caut(us), past participle of cavēre to guard against (cau- take care, guard + -tus past participle suffix) + -iōn- -ion

cautioner, noun
overcaution, noun, verb (used with object)
recaution, verb (used with object)
supercaution, noun
uncautioned, adjective
well-cautioned, adjective

1. circumspection, discretion, watchfulness, heed, vigilance. 2. admonition, advice, counsel. 4. admonish, forewarn. See warn.

1. carelessness. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To Cautioned
World English Dictionary
caution (ˈkɔːʃən)
1.  care, forethought, or prudence, esp in the face of danger; wariness
2.  something intended or serving as a warning; admonition
3.  chiefly (Brit) law a formal warning given to a person suspected or accused of an offence that his words will be taken down and may be used in evidence
4.  a notice entered on the register of title to land that prevents a proprietor from disposing of his or her land without a notice to the person who entered the caution
5.  informal an amusing or surprising person or thing: she's a real caution
6.  (tr) to urge or warn (a person) to be careful
7.  chiefly (Brit) (tr) law to give a caution to (a person)
8.  (intr) to warn, urge, or advise: he cautioned against optimism
[C13: from Old French, from Latin cautiō, from cavēre to beware]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

c.1300, "bail, guarantee, pledge," from O.Fr., "security, surety," from L. cautionem (nom. cautio), from cautus pp. of cavere "to be on one's guard" (see caveat). The Latin sense re-emerged in Eng. 16c.-17c. The verb sense of "to warn" is from 1640s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature