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[puhngk-til-ee-oh] /pʌŋkˈtɪl iˌoʊ/
noun, plural punctilios for 1.
a fine point, particular, or detail, as of conduct, ceremony, or procedure.
strictness or exactness in the observance of formalities or amenities.
Origin of punctilio
1590-1600; alteration of Italian puntiglio < Spanish puntillo, diminutive of punto < Latin pūnctum point Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for punctilio
  • No mission should ever be compromised by diplomatic punctilio.
  • They really seem to show a readiness to stand on punctilio and ceremony.
British Dictionary definitions for punctilio


noun (pl) -os
strict attention to minute points of etiquette
a petty formality or fine point of etiquette
Word Origin
C16: from Italian puntiglio small point, from punto point, from Latin punctum point
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 punctilio

1590s, "point," also "detail of action," from Italian puntiglio or Spanish puntillo, diminutive of punto "point" (see point (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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