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[prek-uh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /ˈprɛk əˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/
of, pertaining to, characterized by, or expressing entreaty or supplication:
precatory overtures.
Also, precative
[prek-uh-tiv] /ˈprɛk ə tɪv/ (Show IPA)
Origin of precatory
1630-40; < Late Latin precātōrius, equivalent to Latin precā() to pray, entreat + -tōrius -tory1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for precatory
  • The provision is, as the phrase goes, merely precatory.
  • The compliance requirement is not precatory in administrative adjudication, but is mandatory.
  • The resolution's first substantive provision uses six verbs, all of which are conciliatory or precatory.
  • If unchanged, this language would be construed as precatory.
  • The explanation is vague and moreover it is precatory.
British Dictionary definitions for precatory


/ˈprɛkətərɪ; -trɪ/
(rare) of, involving, or expressing entreaty; supplicatory Also precative (ˈprɛkətɪv)
Word Origin
C17: from Late Latin precātōrius relating to petitions, from Latin precārī to beg, pray
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 precatory

1630s, from Late Latin precatorius "pertaining to petitioning," from precatorem "one who prays," agent noun from precari "to pray" (see pray).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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