Two men putting plywood over windows in preparation of a storm.
Putting boards over the windows to prevent break-ins is an example of a precaution.
- care taken beforehand; caution used in advance
- a measure taken beforehand against possible danger, failure, etc.
Origin of precautionFrench précaution ; from Late Latin praecautio ; from Classical Latin praecautus, past participle of praecavere ; from prae-, before (see pre-) + cavere, to take care: for Indo-European base see hear
- An action taken in advance to protect against possible danger, failure, or injury; a safeguard: followed safety precautions when using heavy machinery.
- Caution practiced in advance; forethought or circumspection: a need for precaution when planning a vacation.
Origin of precautionLate Latin praecauti&omacron;, praecauti&omacron;n-, from praecautus, past participle of Latin praecav&emacron;re, to guard against : prae-, pre- + cav&emacron;re, to beware.
- Previous caution or care; caution previously employed to prevent mischief or secure good; as, his life was saved by precaution.
- A measure taken beforehand to ward off evil or secure good or success; a precautionary act.
- to take precautions against risks of accident
(third-person singular simple present precautions, present participle precautioning, simple past and past participle precautioned)
- : To warn or caution beforehand. --Locke.
- (rare): To take precaution against. --John Dryden.