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prop·er  (prpr)
1. Characterized by appropriateness or suitability; fitting: the proper knife for cutting bread; not a proper moment for a joke.
2. Called for by rules or conventions; correct: the proper form for a business letter.
3. Strictly following rules or conventions, especially in social behavior; seemly: a proper lady; a proper gentleman.
a. Belonging to one; own: restored to his proper shape by the magician.
b. Characteristically belonging to the being or thing in question; peculiar: an optical effect proper to fluids.
5. Being within the strictly limited sense, as of a term designating something: the town proper, excluding the suburbs.
6. Ecclesiastical For use in the liturgy of a particular feast or season of the year.
7. Mathematics Of or relating to a subset of a given set when the set has at least one element not in the subset.
8. Worthy of the name; true: wanted a proper dinner, not just a snack.
9. Out-and-out; thorough: a proper whipping.
Thoroughly: beat the eggs good and proper.
n. Ecclesiastical also Proper
The parts of the liturgy that vary according to the particular feast or season of the year.

[Middle English propre, from Old French, from Latin proprius; see per1 in Indo-European roots.]

proper·ly adv.
proper·ness n.

proper  /prpr/  adj. 1 correct, right as to how to do s.t.: The proper way to fix that engine is to overhaul it completely, not tinker with it. 2 having good manners, correct behavior: She is proper in the way she behaves. 3 suitable, not inferior: In this rainy climate, you have to have a proper raincoat and boots. 4 in a specific area, not outside it: She lives in Paris proper, not in the suburbs. -adv. properly. proper

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