Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1500-1600
Language: Latin
Origin: cautio, from cavere 'to be careful, be on guard'

caution

1 noun
     
Related topics: Law
cau‧tion1
1 [uncountable] the quality of being very careful to avoid danger or risks [↪ cautious]
with caution
We must proceed with extreme caution.
The physician must exercise caution when prescribing anti-depressants.
counsel/urge caution
Many parents are tempted to intervene, but most experts counsel caution.
treat/view something with caution (=think carefully about something because it might not be true)
Evidence given by convicted criminals should always be treated with the utmost caution.

➔ err on the side of caution

at err (1)
2 [countable] a warning or piece of advice telling you to be careful:
Although pleased, Henson added a caution that the team still has a long way to go.
word/note of caution
A final word of caution - never try any of this without backing up your system.
3

throw/cast caution to the winds

literary to stop worrying about danger and to take a big risk:
Throwing caution to the winds, she swung around to face him.
4 [uncountable and countable] British EnglishSCL a spoken official warning given to someone who has been arrested or who has done something wrong that is not a serious crime:
He was let off with a caution.
under caution
The defendant may make a statement under caution.

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