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[prood-nt] /ˈprud nt/
wise or judicious in practical affairs; sagacious; discreet or circumspect; sober.
careful in providing for the future; provident:
a prudent decision.
Origin of prudent
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin prūdent- (stem of prūdēns), contraction of prōvidēns provident
Related forms
prudently, adverb
nonprudent, adjective
nonprudently, adverb
preprudent, adjective
preprudently, adverb
superprudent, adjective
unprudent, adjective
unprudently, adverb
Can be confused
prudent, prudential.
1. sensible. 2. economical, thrifty, frugal. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for prudent
  • Her reaction was so overtly prudent it sent the others into an unprecedented panic.
  • In any case, it's prudent to limit your intake of high-sodium processed and prepared food.
  • You'd think that by now prudent management and sustainable fishing would be more of a reality.
  • The movie's prudent cultural economy suggests otherwise.
  • Of course, to the extent that such drugs pose health risks, it's prudent to restrict their use.
  • And it behooves teachers to fill in the gaps wherever their professional judgment deems it necessary or prudent.
  • Taking that into consideration, it is prudent to reexamine the experiment and look for missing factors.
  • It would be prudent to move them into well-guarded centralized locations.
  • It seems to me only prudent to protect something, that without, you would be impotent.
  • prudent gamblers and investors all know about hedging.
British Dictionary definitions for prudent


discreet or cautious in managing one's activities; circumspect
practical and careful in providing for the future
exercising good judgment or common sense
Derived Forms
prudently, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Latin prūdēns far-sighted, contraction of prōvidens acting with foresight; see provident
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 prudent

late 14c., from Old French prudent "with knowledge, deliberate" (c.1300), from Latin prudentem (nominative prudens) "knowing, skilled, sagacious, circumspect;" rarely in literal sense "foreseeing;" contraction of providens, present participle of providere "to foresee" (see provide). Related: Prudently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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