precipitately


Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

pre·cip·i·tate

 (prĭ-sĭp′ĭ-tāt′)
v. pre·cip·i·tat·ed, pre·cip·i·tat·ing, pre·cip·i·tates
v.tr.
1. To cause to happen, especially suddenly or prematurely: an announcement that precipitated a political crisis.
2. To cause to fall down from a height; hurl downward: "The finest bridge in all Peru broke and precipitated five travelers into the gulf below" (Thornton Wilder).
3. To put suddenly into a certain state or condition: "He was like a man who had never known liberty and was all at once precipitated into it" (Taylor Caldwell).
4. Meteorology To cause (a form of water, as rain or snow) to fall from the air.
5. Chemistry To cause (a solid substance) to be separated from a solution.
v.intr.
1. Meteorology To fall from the air as a form of water, such as rain or snow.
2. Chemistry To be separated from a solution as a solid.
adj. (-tĭt)
1. Moving rapidly and heedlessly; speeding headlong.
2. Acting with or marked by excessive haste and lack of due deliberation. See Synonyms at impetuous.
3. Occurring suddenly or unexpectedly.
n. (-tāt′, -tĭt)
1. Chemistry A solid or solid phase separated from a solution.
2. A product resulting from a process, event, or course of action.

[Latin praecipitāre, praecipitāt-, to throw headlong, from praeceps, praecipit-, headlong : prae-, pre- + caput, capit-, head; see kaput- in Indo-European roots.]

pre·cip′i·tate·ly (-tĭt-lē) adv.
pre·cip′i·tate·ness n.
pre·cip′i·ta′tive adj.
pre·cip′i·ta′tor n.
Usage Note: The adjective precipitate and the adverb precipitately were once applied to physical steepness but are now used primarily of rash, headlong actions: Their precipitate entry into the foreign markets led to disaster. He withdrew precipitately from the race. Precipitous currently means "steep" in both literal and figurative senses: the precipitous rapids of the upper river; a precipitous drop in commodity prices. But precipitous and precipitously are also frequently used to mean "abrupt, hasty," which takes them into territory that would ordinarily belong to precipitate and precipitately: their precipitous decision to leave. Many people object to this usage out of a desire to keep precipitate and precipitous distinct, but the extension of meaning from "steep" to "abrupt" is perfectly natural. After all a precipitous increase in reports of measles is also an abrupt or sudden event. In fact, a majority of the Usage Panel now accepts this usage. In our 2004 survey, 65 percent accepted the sentence Pressure to marry may cause precipitous decision-making that is not grounded in the reality of who you are and what you want from life.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adv.1.precipitately - at breakneck speed; "burst headlong through the gate"
Translations

precipitately

[prɪˈsɪpɪtɪtlɪ] ADVprecipitadamente

precipitately

[prɪˈsɪpɪtətli] advprécipitamment

precipitately

adv (= hastily)hastig, eilig; (= over-hastily)übereilt, voreilig, überstürzt

precipitately

[prɪˈsɪpɪtɪtlɪ] advprecipitosamente
References in classic literature ?
Still haunted by misgivings of trouble to come, I hesitated to announce my arrival precipitately by ringing the house-bell.
The little champion of Rum Alley stumbled precipitately down the other side.
van der Luyden had come to town for a few days from Skuytercliff, whither they had precipitately fled at the announcement of Beaufort's failure.
Joe experienced a keen sensation or terror mingled with disgust, as he looked at it, and he leaped precipitately from the tree amid the hissings of these new and unwelcome bedfellows.
In fact, Porthos and Aramis did charge with such vigor, and so thoroughly animated their men, that the royalists re-embarked precipitately, without gaining anything but the wounds they carried away.
WHEN those of the royalists who had not deserted the King and fled precipitately toward the coast had regained the castle and the Priory the city was turned over to looting and rapine.
He was always keyed up, alert for attack, wary of being attacked, with an eye for sudden and unexpected missiles, prepared to act precipitately and coolly, to leap in with a flash of teeth, or to leap away with a menacing snarl.
March needed rest, and seizing Laurie, he precipitately retired.
My second was a violent perception of the mistake of my first: the man who met my eyes was not the person I had precipitately supposed.
Fifteen miles farther, in the land of Alata, it rushes precipitately from the top of a high rock, and forms one of the most beautiful water-falls in the world: I passed under it without being wet; and resting myself there, for the sake of the coolness, was charmed with a thousand delightful rainbows, which the sunbeams painted on the water in all their shining and lively colours.
Betts Shoreham manifested no concern at this movement, though Mademoiselle Hennequin precipitately changed her seat, which had been quite near--approximately near, as one might say--to the chair occupied by the gentleman.
The embarrassment of the polite Gauls at such an unlooked-for occurrence may be easily imagined, but picture their consternation, when all at once the royal lady, eager to display the hieroglyphics on her own sweet form, bent forward for a moment, and turning sharply round, threw up the skirt of her mantle and revealed a sight from which the aghast Frenchmen retreated precipitately, and tumbling into their boats, fled the scene of so shocking a catastrophe.