-ous, -ious, -eous

(Latin: full of or having the qualities of; in chemistry, a suffix denoting that the element indicated by the name bearing it, has a valence lower than that denoted by the termination -ic; as, nitrous, sulphurous, etc., as contrasted with nitric, sulphuric, etc.)

Only a small number of the hundreds of examples are presented because there are just too many to include at this time.

A reference to the lower reaches of rivers and streams.
precarious (adjective), more precarious, most precarious
1. Relating to the will or pleasure of another person; held by courtesy; liable to be changed or lost at the pleasure of another: The workers had precarious privileges provided by their company which could be altered or terminated at any time.
2. Referring to a doubtful tenure; depending on unknown causes or events; exposed to constant risk; not to be depended on for certainty or stability; uncertain: Gisela was in a precarious state of health, not knowing if her blood results were going to improve or not.

Some of the stock investors had precarious fortunes which could be lost the next day!

Steve's cousin made a precarious living by gambling, hoping and believing that he would win the big jackpot at sometime!

3. Dangerously unstable, unsteady, uncertain, or insecure: The strong winds almost knocked Brian off his precarious position on the edge of the cliff.
4. Etymology: from 1646, a legal word, "held through the favor of another"; from Latin precarius, "obtained by asking or praying"; from prex, precis, "entreaty, prayer".

The notion of "dependent on the will of another" led to the sense of "risky, dangerous, uncertain" from about 1687.

Depending on the will of another person.
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Perilous or risky circumstances.
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An uncertain and insecure situation.
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precipitous (adjective); more precipitous, most precipitous
1. A reference to an action done or acted on too quickly and without enough thought: Monroe finished his company assignment in a precipitous way which was accomplished in great haste and without proper deliberation.
2. Etymology: "abrupt, hasty"; later, "rushing headlong; probably formed partly in English from Latin praecipitium, "precipice" meaning "steep, headlong, headfirst"+ English -ous, "characterized by".
Relating to going down violently.
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precocious (adjective), more precocious, most precocious
1. A reference to a person who is more mentally developed than is usual at a certain age: Little six-year-old Max is a precocious boy with his cognitive skills and intelligence.
2. Relating to something that takes place at an early stage of development: One kind of magnolia produces precocious flowers before the leaves appear.

3. Etymology: from Latin praecox, praecoc-; from praecoquere "to ripen fully"; from prae, "before" + coquere, "to cook" + -ious, "characterized by".
Conveying early mental development.
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Presenting abnormal intelligence for a very young person.
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preconscious (adjective) (not comparable)
A reference to the mental contents or movements in a person's mind that can be easily recalled to awareness or knowledge: Preconscious memories and feelings can be brought back in an individual through intended effort by a specialist.
presumptuous (adjective); more presumptuous, most presumptuous
1. Characterizing unduly confidence or boldness in opinion or conduct in a way that is arrogant, impertinent, or rude: Mac was giving presumptuous advice to his supervisor about how the project should be done.
2. Relating to the action of doing something without permission or which is not proper, or done for a good reason: The student's presumptuous interruptions by asking the teacher questions before she was able to finish explaining the exercise was more disruptive than helpful in understanding it.
3. Etymology: from Latin praesumptuosus and praesumere, "to take beforehand, presuppose"; from prae-, "before (in time and place) + sumere, "to take"; which is a compound of sub, "under" + emere, "to take".
Overly bold and taking unacceptable liberties.
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Being boldly rude and interruptive.
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Descriptive of anyone who exceeds a rational or acceptable behavior.
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pretentious (adjective); more pretentious, most pretentious
1. Descriptive of a person who claims a position of distinction or merit, even when it is not justified: Don is a pretentious salesman who claims to be the greatest contributor to his company's profitable existence.
2. Relating to the unpleasant quality of a person who wants to be regarded as more impressive, successful, or more important than he or she really is: By using pretentious language, Jack expressed how easy the chemistry test was even though he did not have the highest grade after it was corrected by his teacher.
3. Etymology: from Latin pretentionem, "pretension"; from praetendere, "to pretend" from French prétentieux, "pretension."
Pertaining to being a pompous executive.
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A reference to being a pretentious public servant.
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Conveying importance to being a pretentious guest.
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previous (adjective); more previous, most previous
1. Regarding something that existed or happened before or in time: In comparison to the preceding or previous day, the weather was sunny and bright.
2. Concerning a person who is unduly rash in coming to a conclusion: Mr. Timmons though that his student was a bit previous in answering the question.
1. Having the incisor teeth directed forward.
2. Inclined; tending by nature.
prodigious (adjective), more prodigious, most prodigious
1. A reference to something that is great in size, force, or extent as to elicit awe: The weather forecast indicated that a prodigious storm was coming the next day.
2. Of momentous or ominous significance: The prophet had a prodigious vision about what would happen to the people if the terrorists invaded the country.
3. Pertaining to that which is wonderful or marvelous: Shirley had a prodigious, or a remarkable talent, as a writer.
4. Referring to anything which is beyond what is usual in magnitude or degree: The winner of the quiz program succeeded in achieving the prodigious sum of one million dollars.
5. Extraordinary in bulk, quantity, or degree: The ocean has a prodigious, or an astounding, amount of water.

The local newspaper reported that there was a prodigious, or an amazing number, of visitors at the recent art exhibition.
6. Pertaining to being bountiful, profuse, and abundant: There are prodigious numbers of word entries that still need to be completed and/or enhanced in this lexicon.
7. Etymology: from Latin prodigiosus "marvelous" and prodigium "prophetic sign, portent".

Pertaining to being extraordinary in quantity or degree.
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A reference to being large in quantity or degree.
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proliferous (adjective), more proliferous, most proliferous
1. In zoology, referring to propagation by means of buds and side branches: Corals are known to be proliferous as they develop abundant calcareous deposits forming reefs or islands in warm water seas.
2. In botany, concerning the free production of buds or offshoots: Some plants are quite proliferous and grow additional sprigs and branches from a flower or from a terminal part.
promiscuous (adjective), more promiscuous, most promiscuous
1. Having or being involved with many amorous partners: Mollie was accused of being a promiscuous woman because she had so many boyfriends.
2. Involving or including too many things or people: Roberto had a promiscuous desire for all kinds and large amounts of food.
3. Etymology: from Latin pro-, "thoroughly" + miscere, "to mix".
1. Successful and flourishing; especially, earning or producing great wealth.
2. Having wealth, or associated with wealthy people.
3. Characterized by success or good fortune: "The company had a prosperous year."
4. Likely to be successful or to bring a good result.
1. In botany, having the pistil or female organ mature before the stamens or male organs.
2. In zoology, of a hermaphrodite animal, or a colony of zooids: Having the female organs, or individuals, sexually mature before the male.