Definition of caution in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈkôSH(ə)n/


1Care taken to avoid danger or mistakes: anyone receiving a suspect package should exercise extreme caution
More example sentences
  • Extreme caution and care is required and journeys should not be undertaken unless necessary.
  • To this effect, he wanted to urge road users locally to exercise care, caution and common sense when getting behind the wheel of a car.
  • The Australian government warns travelers to exercise extreme caution.
care, carefulness, heedfulness, heed, attention, attentiveness, alertness, watchfulness, vigilance, circumspection, discretion, prudence
1.1Warning: business advisers have sounded a note of caution
More example sentences
  • However he sounded a note of caution, warning that the glut of orders could provoke a disturbing crisis in manufacturing capacity locally.
  • Perhaps, then, Vergil's great epic does not aim only to magnify the greatness of Augustus' Rome but also to sound a note of caution or, even, warning.
  • The report waives a flag of caution, warning that resources needed for educational endeavors have been reduced all across the spectrum.
2 informal, dated An amusing or surprising person.


[reporting verb]
1Say something as a warning: [with clause]: the secretary cautioned that economic uncertainties remained [with direct speech]: “Be careful now,” I cautioned
More example sentences
  • Thailand might experience a trade deficit for the first time since the country managed to weather the 1997 economic crisis, KRC cautioned.
  • Finally, he calls for consideration of potential economic fallout, cautioning that new developments will inevitably displace older technologies.
  • However, oil greases the national economy, and Gref cautioned on Thursday that the sector could be squeezed only so much before the economy started to suffer.
1.1 [no object] (caution against) Warn or advise against (doing something): advisers have cautioned against tax increases
More example sentences
  • When advising readers on choosing titles carefully, you caution against titles that may be too silly or trite.
  • In an accompanying editorial, Patriarca commends the study of new options for prevention of influenza but cautions against equating efficacy data with real-life effectiveness at a community level.
  • Before concluding, we reiterate the importance of high morale and caution against false rumors, defeatism, uncertainty, and discouragement.
advise, warn, counsel;
admonish, exhort


Middle English (denoting bail or a guarantee): from Latin caution-, from cavere 'take heed'.

Words that rhyme with caution

abortion, apportion, contortion, distortion, extortion, portion, proportion, retortion, torsion
Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.