proper Definition

  • 1real, genuine, or correct
  • 2suitable or appropriate
  • 3thorough or complete

Using proper: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "proper" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    It's important to use the proper tools for the job.

  • Example

    She always speaks in a very proper manner.

  • Example

    He made sure to give her a proper goodbye.

  • Example

    The proper way to address the queen is 'Your Majesty.'

proper Synonyms and Antonyms

Idioms Using proper

  • put/set someone straight (about/on something)

    to correct someone's misunderstanding or misconception about something


    I had to put him straight about the proper way to use the equipment.

  • a job done well or correctly


    You did a proper job on fixing the car.

  • used to indicate that what follows is the most accurate or appropriate way of describing something


    Properly speaking, it's not a disease but a disorder.

Phrases with proper

  • proper noun

    a name that identifies a particular person, place, or thing, and is usually written with an initial capital letter


    New York City is a proper noun.

  • a fraction where the numerator is smaller than the denominator


    1/2 is a proper fraction.

  • an adjective derived from a proper noun, such as 'American' from 'America'


    English is a proper adjective.

Origins of proper

from Old French 'propre', meaning 'own' or 'particular'


Summary: proper in Brief

The term 'proper' [ˈprɒpə(r)] denotes authenticity, correctness, suitability, or thoroughness. It can refer to using the right tools, speaking in a formal manner, or giving a proper goodbye. 'Proper' also has specific meanings in phrases like 'proper noun,' 'proper fraction,' and 'proper adjectives.' Idioms like 'put/set someone straight' and 'proper job' emphasize accuracy and correctness.

How do native speakers use this expression?