a cliff with a vertical, nearly vertical, or overhanging face.
a situation of great peril: on the precipice of war.

1590–1600; < Middle French < Latin praecipitium steep place, equivalent to praecipit- (stem of praeceps) steep, headlong (prae- pre- + -cipit-, combining form of caput head; see caput) + -ium -ium

precipiced, adjective
unprecipiced, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
precipice (ˈprɛsɪpɪs)
1.  a.  the steep sheer face of a cliff or crag
 b.  the cliff or crag itself
2.  a precarious situation
[C16: from Latin praecipitium steep place, from praeceps headlong]

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

1598, "fall to great depth," from Fr. précipice, from L. præcipitium "a steep place," lit. "a fall or leap," from præceps (gen. præcipitis) "steep, headlong, headfirst," from præ- "forth" + caput "head" (see head). Meaning "steep face of rock" is recorded from 1632.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
In some places it cuts across the face of a precipice.
With a concrete wall on one side and a precipice on the other, there was
  nowhere to escape and they were crushed.
You guys are on the precipice of insanity.
On every hand were precipices and a wild confusion of rocks and trees.
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