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1. Characterized by appropriateness or suitability; fitting: the proper knife for cutting bread; not a proper moment for a joke.
2. Called for by rules or conventions; correct: the proper form for a business letter.
3. Strictly following rules or conventions, especially in social behavior; seemly: a proper lady; a proper gentleman.
a. Belonging to one; own: restored to his proper shape by the magician.
b. Characteristically belonging to the being or thing in question; peculiar: an optical effect proper to fluids.
5. Being within the strictly limited sense, as of a term designating something: the town proper, excluding the suburbs.
6. Ecclesiastical For use in the liturgy of a particular feast or season of the year.
7. Mathematics Of or relating to a subset of a given set when the set has at least one element not in the subset.
8. Worthy of the name; true: wanted a proper dinner, not just a snack.
9. Out-and-out; thorough: a proper whipping.
Thoroughly: beat the eggs good and proper.
n. also Proper Ecclesiastical
The portion of the liturgy that varies according to the particular feast or season of the year.

[Middle English propre, from Old French, from Latin proprius; see per in Indo-European roots.]

prop′er·ly adv.
prop′er·ness n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.properness - correct or appropriate behavior
demeanor, demeanour, deportment, behaviour, conduct, behavior - (behavioral attributes) the way a person behaves toward other people
decorousness, decorum - propriety in manners and conduct
appropriateness, rightness - appropriate conduct; doing the right thing
correctness - the quality of conformity to social expectations
good form - behavior that conforms to social conventions of the time; "it is not good form to brag about winning"
priggishness, primness - exaggerated and arrogant properness
reserve, modesty - formality and propriety of manner
seemliness, grace - a sense of propriety and consideration for others; "a place where the company of others must be accepted with good grace"
decency - the quality of conforming to standards of propriety and morality
improperness, impropriety - an improper demeanor


Conformity to recognized standards, as of conduct or appearance:
References in periodicals archive ?
Remarkably, his study also reveals that Anglo-origin speakers use this construction more than speakers of other ethnicities, which can reverse popular misconceptions regarding the properness of British speakers' language uses.
s UK publishing unit as part of its ongoing duty to assess fitness and properness.
This is remarkable, because the whole scholarly disputation in the late 16th century and early 17th century regarding the new readings and the new emulation of ancient and contemporary authors moves around the ideas of adequateness and novelty (remembering that 'aptness', in Chapman's time, is closer to the idea of convenience and properness, following the Latin aptus).
In order to have a concern about fitness and properness we would need to see evidence of misconduct in the parent company Fox.
Posture Evaluation: The participants of the study were observed from the anterior, posterior and lateral perspectives for postural properness and the specified postural distortions were recorded.
196) The constitutionality of the execution of the Act and the properness of the delegation hinged on avoiding arbitrary action.
As an alien and stranger, being defined against the properness of Lodovico--one of "the wealthy curled darlings of our nation" (1.
Since the morphism [pi] is proper and birational, the valuative criterion of properness implies the existence of a unique non-constant arc [bar.
50) The properness of the private placement itself was not further challenged.
The CFI comparative index could be used to determine the properness of the model.
For control design, a polynomial method [1, 2], which helps fulfill the basic requirements such stability and internal properness of the control system, asymptotic tracking of the reference signal and load disturbance rejection, is utilized.
Maternal risk factors and the properness of human development in the prenatal period) AWF Monografie Poznan 1999; 339.