gin|ger|ly [ˈdʒındʒəli US -ər-] adv, adj
[Date: 1500-1600; Origin: Perhaps from Old French gensor 'more small and graceful', from gent 'born into high rank, small and graceful']
if you move gingerly, or touch something gingerly, you do it in a slow careful way, because you are afraid it will be dangerous or painful
He gingerly felt his way along the dark tunnel.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gingerly — Gin ger*ly, adv. [Prov. E. ginger brittle, tender; cf. dial. Sw. gingla, g[ a]ngla, to go gently, totter, akin to E. gang.] Cautiously; timidly; fastidiously; daintily. [1913 Webster] What is t that you took up so gingerly ? Shak. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • gingerly — [adj] careful calculating, cautious, chary, circumspect, considerate, dainty, delicate, discreet, fastidious, guarded, hesitant, reluctant, safe, squeamish, suspicious, timid, wary; concepts 542,550 Ant. careless, rash, rough, uncareful,… …   New thesaurus

  • gingerly — index meticulous Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • gingerly — (adv.) 1510s, elegantly, daintily, perhaps from O.Fr. gensor, comp. of gent dainty, delicate, from L. gentius (well) born (see GENTLE (Cf. gentle)). Meaning extremely cautiously is from c.1600 …   Etymology dictionary

  • gingerly — ► ADVERB ▪ in a careful or cautious manner. ► ADJECTIVE ▪ showing great care or caution. ORIGIN perhaps from Old French gensor delicate , from Latin genitus well born …   English terms dictionary

  • gingerly — [jin′jər′lē] adv. [altered (after GINGER) < ? OFr genzor, compar. of gent, delicate (see GENT2) + LY2] in a very careful or cautious way adj. very careful; cautious gingerliness n …   English World dictionary

  • gingerly — [[t]ʤɪ̱nʤə(r)li[/t]] ADV GRADED: ADV with v If you do something gingerly, you do it in a careful manner, usually because you expect it to be dangerous, unpleasant, or painful. [WRITTEN] She was touching the dressing gingerly with both hands... I… …   English dictionary

  • gingerly — adverb, adjective if you move gingerly or touch something gingerly you do it in a careful way because you are afraid it will be dangerous or painful: He gingerly felt his way along the dark tunnel …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • gingerly — 1. adverb /ˈdʒɪn.dʒə Gently; in a delicate or cautious manner. He placed the glass jar gingerly on the concrete step. 2. adjective /ˈdʒɪn.dʒə Ginger. ...penetrating cautiously into dark cellars, sallying forth with gingerly tread to the …   Wiktionary

  • gingerly — adjective Etymology: perhaps from 1ginger Date: 1604 very cautious or careful • gingerliness noun • gingerly adverb …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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