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gingerly

[jin-jer-lee] /ˈdʒɪn dʒər li/
adverb
1.
with great care or caution; warily.
adjective
2.
cautious, careful, or wary.
Origin
1510-1520
1510-20; ginger-, perhaps < Middle French gensor, genzor delicate, pretty, positive use of comparative of gent gentle; see -ly
Related forms
gingerliness, noun
Synonyms
1. cautiously, carefully, prudently.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for gingerly
  • Each leg is gingerly held in its jaws and nibbled to clean the leg as it is carefully pulled through the chelicerae.
  • So I gingerly reached in and pulled it out.
  • He then walked gingerly off the field.
  • More likely, he will take it a little more gingerly.
  • Press down gingerly to get a good seal and then peel the tape apart slowly enough so that the graphite cleaves smoothly in two.
  • Footsteps crunch frozen tundra, and dancing shoes step gingerly over ice-covered rivulets.
  • It lifted a leg very carefully and patted his cheek gingerly.
  • He was helped to his feet and walked gingerly off on his own power.
  • All appliances have their peccadilloes, and need to be treated gingerly.
  • He waved gingerly with his right hand.
British Dictionary definitions for gingerly

gingerly

/ˈdʒɪndʒəlɪ/
adverb
1.
in a cautious, reluctant, or timid manner
adjective
2.
cautious, reluctant, or timid
Derived Forms
gingerliness, noun
Word Origin
C16: perhaps from Old French gensor dainty, from gent of noble birth; see gentle
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 gingerly
adv.

1510s, "elegantly, daintily," perhaps from Old French gensor, comp. of gent "dainty, delicate," from Latin gentius "(well)-born" (see gentle). Meaning "extremely cautiously" is from c.1600.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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