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Definition done with very great haste and without due deliberation


very steep

More rarely, precipitous may mean characterized by precipices (steep cliffs); or extremely steep.
  • By August 19, he was dead. There has been a great deal of conjecture about what caused such a precipitous decline.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
precipitous = fast
  • Slopes rose precipitously from the water's edge, bearded in a gloom of hemlock and cedar and devil's club.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • precipitously = steeply
  • He stayed there for ten days, until high winds forced him to seek refuge in a cave midway up the precipitous face of the bluff, where he remained for another ten days.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • precipitous = steep
  • "There was a moment when Marion's blood pressure dropped precipitously.
    Abraham Verghese  --  Cutting for Stone
  • She swam out farther and paused where the floor dropped precipitously into deepest blue.
    Dave Eggers  --  A Hologram for the King
  • The mountains were more precipitous now than ever before.
    Betty Mahmoody  --  Not Without My Daughter
  • The woods ran to the river in deep gullies, which dropped precipitously and cut across the road.
    Boris Pasternak  --  Doctor Zhivago
  • Now she was racing headlong down a precipitous grade where any misplaced step could mean a deadly fall.
    Dan Brown  --  Angels & Demons
  • Their excitement was not his; he felt as if he'd moved too precipitously.
    Junot Diaz  --  Drown
  • Still he went on, for his mind was as utterly narrowed into that precipitous crevice of play as if he had been the most ignorant lounger there.
    George Eliot  --  Middlemarch
  • Within a week after the receipt of this letter their little household fell precipitously to pieces.
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  This Side of Paradise
  • Together we made our way down the precipitous slope and approached the body, black and clear against the silvered stones.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • He descended into a ravine which became precipitous.
    Zane Grey  --  The Heritage of the Desert
  • Climbing the precipitous ascent, he laughed and chattered, but she was silent, seeming to brood over something.
    D.H. Lawrence  --  Sons and Lovers
  • So precipitous was his move that he caught her off guard.
    Milan Kundera  --  The Unbearable Lightness of Being
  • 1) Of insolence is bred The tyrant; insolence full blown, With empty riches surfeited, Scales the precipitous height and grasps the throne.
    Sophocles  --  Oedipus the King
  • Business began to suffer, at first gradually, then precipitously.
    Warren St. John  --  Outcasts United
  • I recognise the characteristic outline of the Dolbenberg, a jagged comb, springing up precipitously from the limits of the forests.
    Erich Maria Remarque  --  All Quiet on the Western Front
  • The hill offered commanding views, and the slopes were precipitous to the north and west and only slightly more gentle to the east.
    George R.R. Martin  --  A Clash of Kings
  • From a high in 1990, the crime rate went into precipitous decline.
    Malcolm Gladwell  --  The Tipping Point

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